A very good morning to you my precious friends
Psalm 71 verses 14 and 15 says, “As for me, I will hope continually, and will praise You yet more and more. My mouth will tell of Your righteous deeds, of Your saving acts all day long— though I know not how to relate them all.”
When we try to measure God with our mortal minds, we come up with a lot of what seems to be contradictions. It is only natural that we confine His power, His wisdom, His goodness and His justice with our own limitations but these do not fit when applied to God. The greatest minds of the ages have spent their entire existence trying to understand small pieces of this world and our universe with all the intricacies that make it up but have only scratched the surface. Yet God devised it all in His mind and then spoke it into existence from nothing.
But this mighty God whose power is unlimited made mankind to live with Him in eternity. When we rejected Him and His fellowship, He has made it possible for His divine justice to be met and our fellowship to be restored. Since the only just payment for sin is death, He gave His beloved, only sinless Son to live as one of us and then take our sin upon Himself.
How can our mortal minds grasp His love? How can we accept that this God who knows no bounds can actually care about us – but not just care – actually love us? We accept it, believe it and give ourselves to Him by faith. Why would we not trust Him who has already done so much for us? So when we draw near to God, He draws closer to us and we have no need for worry in this life.
The Psalmist felt alone and vulnerable. As he looked around, he realized that his enemies were scheming together, waiting for the right moment to attack. These men were convinced that no one could rescue him, and that even God had forsaken him.
In this position, the Psalmist turned to God, praying that He would “come quickly.” He asked Him to “rescue me and deliver me.” He knew God provided a refuge, that He alone was “my rock and my fortress.”
He felt the impact of growing older. He prayed, “Do not cast me away when I am old; do not forsake me when my strength is gone.” (vs 9) He wanted future generations to know why they should trust God throughout their lives. He vowed to “declare Your power to the next generation, Your mighty acts to all who are to come.”
He recognized that God had been his hope at every stage of life. In spite of his weaknesses and challenges, he could testify to the miraculous way God had intervened: “I have become a marvel to many, for You are my strong refuge.” He knew that God would “increase my honour.”
Reflecting on all that God had done, he continually responded with praise. “My mouth is filled with Your praise and with Your glory all day long.” He promised to praise God with both words and music. He would “shout for joy” and testify to His faithfulness.
The Bible gives this account as a reminder that if we ever feel vulnerable, isolated, discouraged, then these are times to turn to God: - to fill our lives with expressions of thanks and praise. To celebrate because He always is with us and that we can always hope in Him.
The challenge for us is to never lose hope, never give up. Keep on going by just putting one foot in-front of the other until you’re fit enough to break into a jog, and then keep on jogging until your muscles and breath are full enough to run headlong into the purposes and grace that God has for you. Make a decision to hope CONTINUALLY. Not just in the sunny times, in the happiness, the seasons of fortune and glory, but bring hope with you into the dark seasons, the damp and musty times of doubt and failure, through sickness and confusion. Take hope into every season of your life.
Hope is continual – it's attached primarily to the person of our Lord Jesus, and remains with Him into eternity. Colossians 1 verses 16-17 reminds us “Just as Jesus is in all things, through all things, and holds all things together,” hope is all around us all the time. So often we are blinded to it by the mess of life and the boring day to day existence. Hope doesn’t reside on the highest mountain peak; it's not absent in deep dark valleys, but our awareness of it can be dictated to by these experiences. (do not let it)
Join with the writer of this Psalm who, just like you and me, encountered hardship, betrayal, felt anger and bitterness and much more, make a decision to HOPE CONTINUALLY. To praise no matter what. As the storm comes, be determined to hope and praise louder… as the sun shines, break forth into glorious song and grand declarations of God’s goodness and faithfulness.
Father God, You are the giver of life and Creator of the universe. We praise You for You are our everlasting hope. You are our light, our salvation, our stronghold in life. To You, we lift our praises. Thank You for Your forgiveness, Your love, and Your abundant mercies. Thank You for Your wisdom and Your mighty power but even more because of Your love for us. I have let You down in more ways than I can possibly count so I am ever grateful for Your forgiveness. Lord Holy Spirit, help me to become more like You in my heart, my mind and my life. I pray in the name of our Lord Jesus. Amen
Much love from Maurice and Margaret