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Archive for August, 2009

What do you aspire to do?
What motivates and drives you through?
Is it comfort, security or ease of pain?
Power, influence, life in the fast lane?

Why do you work hard, or at other times sit idle?
Why do you follow rules, but then rear your head without bridle?
Are there goals, a plan, or reasons behind?
Fears, ambitions, or answers to find?

Do you know why the questions never cease?
Why all the efforts but no peace?
Would you want to know if you could be told?
Or shrink back in fear and your spirit fold?

If the answer is Jesus will you reject Him out of hand?
Will you still turn away if your reasons won’t stand?
Do you want peace and purpose, a plan you’ve sought?
Security, comfort, and answers that can’t be bought?

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Father, we look forward to a good school year, but we won’t have one without Your active presence.  We acknowledge Your goodness, and request that Your hand of protection be upon us. We ask that You teach us truth so that we may communicate it to students and adults.  And all of this we ask for the glory and in the name of Jesus.  Amen.

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Psalm 103 begins with both a call for the hearer to worship and summary of what the psalmist desires to communicate to himself and those listening to him.  David is alerting his own soul to bless God’s name and His benefits.  But names of God seem to be absent and even the word “name” only appears once in the psalm, so how is His name blessed?  Consider, how do we know the greatness of God’s name?  We know the greatness of it by what He has done.  All works He has done are benefits to those who trust Him, and the greatness of His name is revealed through these benefits.  Add the admonitions of verses 11,13, and 17 to fear Him and we see the summary teaching and application of the Psalm:  Bless His name, remember His benefits, and fear Him.  This application is not merely a spiritual ‘icing on the cake’, it is the means of survival amidst spiritual battle.  David knew the value of it.  In First Samuel 30:3-6 we observe a desperate situation for David and his men.  Having just returned from following the Philistines, they find their hometown, Ziklag, burned down, their wives and children kidnapped to become slaves, and most of their possessions stolen.  The men have wept over their families until they have no strength and are discussing stoning David because of the loss.  The Scripture  records David’s reaction: “But David strengthened himself in the Lord his God.” (v.6).  Now your plight and mine probably are not presently so severe.  The danger is to ignore the need for strengthening ourselves in the Lord.  We are thus rendered weaker for the lesser battles and ill-fit for the greater battles.  And so David urged his innermost being to bless the Lord and not forget His benefits.  May we practice the psalmist’s discipline and experience God’s joy.

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