Friday, November 12, 2010

Reaching Down, Lifting Up...

Our God is a personal God.  He leads as a Father would lead His children, as a Shepherd leads His sheep.  Yes, His call is high, but His love and mercy are deep.

Last week was an especially busy, hard, and somewhat lonely week for me, probably made worse by a severe case of what I call L.O.S.S. (Lack Of Sleep Syndrome).  It was in that context that I came across a song of David.  The book of Psalms is a great place to go to for getting "real" with God; however, the Psalms are not the only place where David's songs are recorded.  In 2 Samuel 22 we read a song of David that is packed with stuff.  David writes this song towards the end of his life.  In fact, he has just finished his last battle; (at least the last battle he will personally participate in).  He is getting old and Abishai has to come to his rescue, at which point David's men swear that he will never ride out with them again.  It is in this context, nearing the end of his earthly life that David penned this song (you can read the whole song here);

17 “He reached down from on high and took hold of me;
   he drew me out of deep waters.
18 He rescued me from my powerful enemy,
   from my foes, who were too strong for me.
19 They confronted me in the day of my disaster,
   but the LORD was my support.
20 He brought me out into a spacious place;
   he rescued me because he delighted in me."

When life comes at you fast, and you feel like you're drowning, remember these words.  God reaches down from heaven and draws us out of our trouble.  He saves us, He gives us perspective, He speaks peace and life into us, and He restores us.  Take a closer look at verse 20; God not only reaches down to lift us up, but He puts us in a "spacious" place.  That word "spacious" is interesting.  Other translations use "broad", wide-open" or "large" place.  Think about that for a moment...

Hayden Valley, Yellowstone National Park
When I read that I immediately got this picture of a wide-open meadow, looking over rolling hills, with a mountain vista in the background.  It's the opposite of the "city" feel.  Why a "spacious" place?  Because in a spacious place there is time, space, peace, healing, safety.  Because in a large place there is room for God.  A wide-open place is not busy, it is not urgent, there is no-one pounding on your door needing your attention, no phone calls or emails to return, it's an "un-plugged" place.  The to-do list is set aside, and you're asked to simply "be."  It's a place of rest, a place of eating, a place of re-discovering the God that adopted you into His family.

And here's the real kicker; WHY did God bring you to this place?  It's right there in verse 20b; "because He delighted in me."  Be encouraged today, disciple of Jesus Christ.  You are a son and daughter of the Most High; a citizen of the city of God...

17 "The LORD your God is with you,
the Mighty Warrior who saves.
He will take great delight in you;
in his love he will no longer rebuke you,
but will rejoice over you with singing." (Zephaniah 3:17)

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