Scripture Reading: Psalm 42:1-11
“Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within Me? Hope in God; for I shall praise Him, my salvation and my God.” (Psalm 42:11)
I’ll be very honest. Several times this week I have felt really down, and I am sure that I am not the only one who has felt this way. We are in good company. Twice in Psalm 42 the Psalmist asks the question — “Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me?” (vs. 5,11). Our lives have been turned upside down; they have been radically changed suddenly.
“Why are you cast down?” Because I am fearful at times. I am afraid that I or one of my loved ones will get this virus. I am afraid because I do not know how long this thing will last. And I am anxious. I look at the decline in the stock market and at businesses that are being greatly affected. I see my retirement funds being reduced rapidly. I can add many other things I’m anxious over. I know we are not supposed to be afraid or anxious; but I am at times. We are all sinners and we all lack the faith we should have.
But when we are experiencing these feelings, we must do what the Psalmist did — “Hope in God; for I shall again praise Him, my salvation and my God.” We are not hopeless. God is in charge. He is our salvation, not only from sin and death, but also from fear and anxiety. We must turn our troubled hearts to Him. We must thirst for Him — “As a deer pants for flowing streams, so pants my soul for you, O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God” (vs. 1,2). When we begin to thirst for God, our eyes will be lifted above the circumstances that cause us to be afraid and anxious. When we thirst for Him, we will praise Him for who He is — our salvation and our God!
We must remember the Lord’s faithfulness and His steadfast love for us — “My soul is cast down within me; therefore I will remember You” (v. 5c). Hear the words of the Psalmist when He began to remember God — “By day the Lord commands His steadfast love, and at night His song is with me, a prayer to the God of my life” (v. 8). God’s covenant faithfulness and His steadfast love are always with us. During the night when we are anxious, remember that God is singing over us. He will quiet us by His love.
“The Lord your God is in your midst, a mighty one who will save; He will rejoice over you with gladness; He will quiet you by His love; He will exult over you with loud singing” (Zephaniah 3:17).
Lord, I know that my fear and my anxiety are not from You. The evil one wants me to doubt Your love and protection. Forgive me when I fail to trust You. I know that I have nothing to fear for You are with me, and I know that I have no need to be anxious because Jesus has told me not to be anxious for He will provide my needs. Let me hear You singing over me. Let me remember Your steadfast love and my soul will be quieted.
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