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Put your hope and your trust in God, for you will yet praise Him.
When David said something similar to the line above, as was his habit, he would add: Selah. In this one word, he was imploring his listeners/readers/singers to pause in the middle, to be still, to just breathe, to give God a moment of entrance through human silence. David stopped the world in one Word—selah, like a forerunner for Christ so that we might meditate on and savor the words regarding God until they fill our soul with the pure substance of eternal life. Only then, can we move forward with power and direction here. The Word is our reason. It energizes us to continue on.
God loves you.
Put your hope and your trust in God, for you will yet praise Him.
God’s Word is nourishment to your soul, more necessary than food and water for the body. We need God to speak into our parched places or we slowly lose our own will in that area—the will to grow, to improve, to go, to reach out. There is LIFE in the Word of God—a holy energy that defies natural logic, which is sourced from no other place. There is no other method than time spent with God, during which He heals us, rescues us and restores us…so roll your soul up to that line and Ask Him to meet you there and speak to your spirit. Nothing else makes genuine sense to us, down to our core, other than the Word of God; it produces the “will to live” and causes us to thrive. Psalm 42:5 says:
Why are you cast down, O my inner self? And why should you moan over me and be disquieted within me? Hope in God and wait expectantly for Him, for I shall yet praise Him, my Help and my God (AMPC).
David had the multitude and money at his disposal—all meant absolutely nothing compared to the presence of God. All of these resources could not be channeled to do one ounce of earthly good without the Spirit of God moving and leading.
You will yet praise God.
Let’s pray the following, beautiful things…
God, we ask You in Jesus’ Name for:
Acknowledgement of Your grace and Your mercies that are new every dawn;
Joy in the Holy Ghost;
Righteousness in Christ Jesus (right standing with You and a great relationship with You, God).
We pray for Victory, and we thank You in advance, for we know that is the place You will bring us to. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
When we step into a willingness, a desire to approach God, to inquire at His temple, there is an “awareness of His Presence”—a peace that passes all understanding as He approaches, too.
And the peace of God, which surpasseth all understanding, keep your hearts and minds in Christ Jesus (Philippians 4:7; Douay-Rheims Bible, Bishop Challoner Revision).
When we authentically want to pay attention to God, we find He is there—indeed, everywhere. His attention paid to us in full has not changed, waned or expired. It cannot. The issue with communication is that the noise of distraction and the feelings of fear impede our human ability to listen, and we find ourselves doing two counter-productive things in our walk with God:
Throwing something of worldly importance between ourselves and God, which eats time away, which follows a long stint of trial, and we assume God will wait until we are done with this thing, though it may take most of the rest of our earthly time.
Refusing to make any decisions with our own lives.
The first is a sign of low-grade fear or disappointment. The second is a sign of low-grade anger or despondency. Why is life so hard? Why is this taking so long? Will this ever get better? Why does this always happen to me? These “murmuring” questions are not aimed at the thin air. Our soul is asking them of God, but not truly connecting with Him enough to find truthful answers. Matthew Henry indicates this is a sign of a “weakened spirit…”
“You, who are great dealers in the world, have your cares [anxieties] attending you all the day, though you keep them to yourselves, yet they sit down with you and rise up with you; they go out and come in with you, and are more a load upon you than those you converse with are aware of. Some, through the weakness of their spirits, can scarce determine anything but with fear and trembling” (Henry, p. 55).
In God’s mercy, when we refuse to put Him first and truly connect, He knows we are not listening to Him, we are not putting His will first. Consequently, we stop having a vision or a direction, we feel lost in this world, and we no longer know what to do or how to be our authentic selves. We become “shelved” instead of moving forward and instigating positive change. Sometimes it is necessary for us to really dry out spiritually and come to a conscious understanding (an “acknowledgement” or awareness of grace, prayed for above) that we need God now more than ever; that we actually do live on His Presence…on every word that proceeds from His mouth.
Jesus answered him, “The Scriptures say, ‘It is not just bread that keeps people alive. Their lives depend on what God says’” (Matthew 4:4, ERV).
Everything that concerns us, depends on what God says. It all depends on God, so a wise and good and faithful servant would continually consult with God. The good news is that God is willing. Are you? Pay attention to verse three:
And the tempter came and said to Him, If You are God’s Son, command these stones to be made [loaves of] bread (Matthew 4:3, AMPC).
This story of temptation could be paraphrased for us like this today:
And the enemy of your soul came by and caused destruction like you have never seen before in your lifetime. He waited until you were exhausted, hungry and did not feel like yourself (see verses 1 and 2). He waited until you had been on your own for a very long time, a loveless environment. Then he started putting ideas into your head that chipped away at your faith (see verse 3b, “if you are God’s”). He caused you to be overworked, and overtaxed—to become fearful, to think yourself in need and less than; he caused you to be in want, so you reasoned to yourself: “If you want it, make it happen.” Command these stones (the world) to make you money, to deliver yourself from your discomfort, then you won’t have to worry. Accomplish it yourself. If you are so special, then prove it.
Rather than entertain all of that, which at the core is pride, it is a better stance to wait on God in faith. Rather than allow the enemy to wear you out, simply say in full soul peace: “Good Spirit of God, lead me into a level country, and teach me to do your will.” Selah. Pause and think about the fact that God is your only Deliverer. Consider what dialogue you wish to entertain in your heart, soul and mind, and pay your attention to the one Relationship than can restore everything that concerns you.
“Teach me to do Your will, for You are my God; let Your good Spirit lead me into a level country and into the land of uprightness” (Psalm 143:10, AMPC).
WHO has your focus been on? Who have you been listening to?
God, or the enemy of your soul?
Since Jesus was led into the wilderness and led out of the wilderness— both transactions by the same Holy Spirit of God, so will God lead you out, no matter if it has been ten years or more. God is teaching you the stark difference between Himself and Satan, and between your own subtle affections. Remember in the wilderness, Jesus kept the WORD of GOD in His Own heart and He continued to believe on His Own and to speak the Word no matter what. Your own soul matters. Your own soul listens to the words you think and speak, and it responds in kind. Your own soul has a measure of health—for richer or for poorer, and it will support you or drop off from beneath you depending upon your own internal atmosphere. God and His holy angels also listen attentively to what you think and say.
I assure you, most solemnly I tell you, if anyone steadfastly believes in Me, he will himself be able to do the things that I do; and he will do even greater things than these, because I go to the Father.
And I will do [I Myself will grant] whatever you ask in My Name [as presenting all that I Am], so that the Father may be glorified and extolled in (through) the Son.
[Yes] I will grant [I Myself will do for you] whatever you shall ask in My Name [as presenting all that I Am] (John 14:12-14, AMPC).
Clean the inside of the cup first. In this one little word, ASK, your whole outcome is changed from the inside out. God says, “I have severed you from other people that you should be Mine” (Leviticus 20:26, paraphrase author’s). The root word of “severed” is severe.
SEVE'RE, adjective [Latin severus.] 1. Rigid; harsh; not mild or indulgent; as severe words; severe treatment; severe wrath. 2. Sharp; hard rigorous. Let your zeal-be more severe against thyself than against others. Taylor. 3. Very strict; or sometimes perhaps, unreasonably strict or exact; giving no indulgence to faults or errors; as severe government; severe criticism. 4. Rigorous, perhaps cruel; as severe punishment; severe justice. 5. Grave; sober; sedate to an extreme; opposed to cheerful, gay, light, lively. Your looks must alter, as your subject does, From kind to fierce, from wanton to severe. Waller. 6. Rigidly exact; strictly methodical; not lax or airy. 7. Sharp; afflictive; distressing; violent; as severe pain, anguish, torture, etc. 8. Sharp; biting; extreme; as severe cold. 9. Close; concise; not luxuriant. 10. Exact; critical; nice; as a sever test (Websters Dictionary 1828, https://webstersdictionary1828.com/Dictionary/severe; emphasis, author’s).
“A sever test” is extreme and cuts to the quick of the soul and reaches the heights of your eternity. It is your primary division, separation and divorce from the enemy to come closer to a most Holy God. There is only one way through it: You must ask and keep on asking so that your joy will be made full.
“Up to this time you have not asked a [single] thing in My Name [as presenting all that I Am]; but now ask and keep on asking and you will receive, so that your joy (gladness, delight) may be full and complete” (John 16:24, AMPC).
If we have to have a physical surgery, to remove death from life, the precision is exact, the healing may be slow, and the prayer is from Heaven to a cellular level we cannot comprehend. The pain is real, but so is the recovery. The fear continues through the pronouncement and inconvenience until we come to the realization that we do have the choice under God to live or to die, which makes all the difference in our attitude (see Deuteronomy 30:19; John 10:10). When we determine it is best to get on with living and continue to trust and believe and abide in the Vine, our stress dissipates. The experience becomes a memory. What does last is this:
I Am yours and thou art Mine.
(See Song of Solomon, 2:16; paraphrase, author’s).
If it must be severe, trust the Physician and He will heal you. He is defending your life no matter how strange, colossal or close the incision must be to remove the thorn.
“Let this burthen be case upon the Lord, believing that his providence extends itself to all your affairs, to all events concerning you, and to all the circumstances of them, even the most minute and seemingly accidental; that your times are in his hands, and all your ways at his disposal. Believe his promise, that all things shall be made to work for good to those that love him, and then refer it to him in everything, to do with you and yours as seemeth good in his eyes, and rest satisfied in having done so, and resolve to be easy. Bring your cares to God by prayer…commit your way to the Lord, and then submit to his disposal of it, though it may cross your expectations… He will care for you as the tender father for the child” (Henry, p. 55).
Danger and war cross our expectations. Good fathers can get instantly violent when pulling their child from eminent danger. If it is a strange and long battle for a landscape, fathers can act decidedly different than was their custom during more peaceful times, but you can be assured that child will survive that war. You are that child. The point of exposure (no one/no thing between yourself and God) is not to remain terror-stricken, parched and lean of soul, nor to remain dry to match the desert, hard-hearted and cynical to match the iron, bitter and confused as to purpose of being so tried for so long…no. The point is not to be worn out, Saint; the point is to experience resurrection…
It is not that you have been rejected by God. It is that you have rejected Him.
He will pull you through.
On being sifted like wheat, remember Jesus has already prayed that your FAITH would survive. Jesus knows if your faith in God survives, so will you. Faith is that important. It is the substance of the Vine.
“…That you may eat and drink at My table in My kingdom and sit on thrones, judging the twelve tribes of Israel.
Simon, Simon (Peter), listen! Satan has asked excessively that [all of] you be given up to him [out of the power and keeping of God], that he might sift [all of] you like grain,
But I have prayed especially for you [Peter], that your [own] faith may not fail; and when you yourself have turned again, strengthen and establish your brethren” (Luke 22:30-32, AMPC).
Job had boils on his body that he had to cut out himself. He lost everything, everyone, in order to know for himself the keen distinction between God and Satan, and to find that distinction in the ways of the world, in existence, in his surroundings, in his family, in his own soul, in his own mind, in his reasoning, in his physical bones, marrow and cells, in his own essence, in his own FAITH. What did he want? Job would not have prayed at all for his friends if he were not on speaking terms with God. There would have been no purpose in praying if he did not still believe God was good.
Job must have been found still attending on God after all he had been through—
no matter how weak the attendance, God noticed it, the tide turned,
and Job lived out the rest of his days in peace.
In the middle, things went beyond ridiculous for Job; his trial went beyond reasonability for the common man. But Job wasn’t common—he was righteous, which makes his situation all the more odd in terms of temporal justice. And if he had filled the breach of injustice with anything other than God Himself, mixed with his own continued belief in God’s good heart and omnipotent power, Job would have run away from God in his own spirit. A spirit of affliction refuses Divine Relationship. Had Job chosen poorly, succumbed to distraction and recoiled from God, he would not have made the cut to be interwoven within the Holy Scriptures forever: unraveled from all evil, to be eternally conjoined to all Good. It was entirely nonsensical except to say that purity means absolutely no mixture. God indeed exists and He is a rewarder of those who DILIGENTLY SEEK HIM (see Hebrews 11:6), those who come back after the wilderness trial and say: I will yet praise God. God is fully holy; we require sanctification.
Blessed are those who TAKE NO OFFENSE IN ME.
“The blind receive their sight and the lame walk, lepers are cleansed (by healing) and the deaf hear, the dead are raised up and the poor have good news (the Gospel) preached to them. And blessed (happy, fortunate, and to be envied) is he who takes no offense at Me and finds no cause for stumbling in or through Me and is not hindered from seeing the Truth. Then as these men went their way, Jesus began to speak to the crowds about John: What did you go out in the wilderness (desert) to see?” (Matthew 11:5-7, AMPC).
To be cleansed, to be healed, can be severe or traumatic at first. To be raised up to preach can be the phenomenon of a lifetime. Blessed is the one who keeps on in Faith. The solution is to carry on as a fully conscious Christian, relying only on God to move you unharmed through the battles until you find peace and victory. You will yet praise Him. He will lead you out of the same wilderness where it seems He dropped you off. Go to the edge, go to the gate, step to that spiritual line and ASK GOD HIMSELF to meet you there. He will surprise you with impossibilities when you stop rejecting Him for Who He is and what He does (in working out your own salvation). Neither Job nor you nor I would pray to a God we did not still LOVE. We all come to a place at the exit gate of a howling wilderness where our “YES, LORD”—genuine and from the heart—paves the pit of abyss that our spirit, and our very lives, cannot step over without the subtlest “I do.” God requires love.
Love comes from God. God is love. After the most unreasonable events, love is the only saving grace, the umbilical cord, that pulls us through massive trial and into a Promised Land—a once in a lifetime experience built by God’s restorative kindness and interwoven with our own faith. We cannot borrow this sort of faith from anyone else—you and I will have to walk this stretch of the journey on our own: just our own self and God. Jesus has already mediated so you can intimately know the Father. He has already prayed for your faith to survive.
Remember: If your faith survives, so will you.
God accepts you right where you are at today, right in this moment. The question is:
Do you accept Him?
Please do not judge God for His methods. No matter how severe the trial or how long it lasts, the outcome is the same for the believer: “That you should be Mine.” Keep going, keep on in faith, keep asking God until, in His mercy, His right hand reaches you and pulls you through into His new mercies. I cannot emphasize this enough:
You will yet praise God.
God bless you.
Translations and References:
Scripture quotations taken from the Amplified® Bible (AMPC), Copyright © 1954, 1958, 1962, 1964, 1965, 1987 by The Lockman Foundation Used by permission. www.lockman.org
Douay-Rheims Bible, Bishop Challoner Revision. Public Domain.
Scriptures marked “ERV” taken from the HOLY BIBLE: EASY-TO-READ VERSION ©2014 by Bible League International. Used by permission.
Henry, M. (2005). The Secret of Communion with God. Solid Ground Christian Books: Birmingham, AL.
King James Version (KJV). Public Domain.
Scriptures marked “PHILLIPS” taken from the New Testament in Modern English by J.B Phillips copyright © 1960, 1972 J. B. Phillips. Administered by The Archbishops’ Council of the Church of England. Used by Permission.