Becoming Desperate For God

The cords of death entangled me;
    the torrents of destruction overwhelmed me.
The cords of the grave coiled around me;
    the snares of death confronted me.

In my distress I called to the Lord;
    I cried to my God for help.
From his temple he heard my voice;
    my cry came before him, into his ears. Psalm 18:4-6

For most of us, we’re not “desperate for God” as David was. He could probably feel Saul breathing down his neck. He cried to God like there was no tomorrow, and it was very real in his life.

So the question I ask is, what will it take for us not only to “need” God but to be desperate for Him. I write that not at all knowing personal situations of most readers so forgive me if I misspeak about your needs and desperation.

Everything about us hinges on that question: what will it take – or what am I willing to do – to be desperate for God? Our life, ministry, and relationships are all affected by the answer to that question – even if the answer is “I’m not willing to do a thing to become desperate for God” it sill will affect your life and ministry.

I would also like to remind you of a post I made two days ago, one that for some reason may not have been sent. It’s Day 3.

The Lord is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer;
    my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge,
    my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold. Psalm 18:2

The words used to describe the Lord are related, and there’s no doubt of their intent. When he wrote this, King David was still being hunted by Saul. It’s certainly not an accident that he uses these phrases. It’s clear that despite overwhelming odds of him remaining alive, David has unwavering confidence in the Lord to protect and deliver him.

Was David naive? Of course not. He realized (as we should) that even if Saul were to catch up with him and take his life, David’s soul would still be perfectly safe.

All too often we forget that “this world is not our home” and “we’re only passing through.”

When I was a new Christian, I recall hearing the phrase “don’t be so heavenly minded that you’re no earthly good.” I’m afraid the pendulum has swung to the opposite that “we’re so earthly minded that we’re no heavenly good” to the extent that we don’t consider eternal things often enough.

How would it change your life if, for the next 30 days, you thought about heaven for five minutes out of your day?

Continue Reading Becoming Desperate For God

Worthy of Praise

I called to the Lord, who is worthy of praise,
    and I have been saved from my enemies. Psalm 18:3

What is heaven like?

The short answer is “he is worthy of praise.”

And quite candidly, the long answer is also, “he is worthy of praise.”

Continue Reading Worthy of Praise

Heavenly Vs. Earthly Good

The Lord is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer;
    my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge,
    my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold. Psalm 18:2

The words used to describe the Lord are related, and there’s no doubt of their intent. When he wrote this, King David was still being hunted by Saul. It’s certainly not an accident that he uses these phrases. It’s clear that despite overwhelming odds of him remaining alive, David had unwavering confidence in the Lord to protect and deliver him.

Was David naive? Of course not. He realized (as we should) that even if Saul were to catch up with him and take his life, David’s soul would still be perfectly safe.

All too often we forget that “this world is not our home” and “we’re only passing through.”

When I was a new Christian, I recall hearing the phrase “don’t be so heavenly minded that you’re no earthly good.” I’m afraid the pendulum has swung to the opposite that “we’re so earthly minded that we’re no heavenly good” to the extent that we don’t consider eternal things often enough.

How would it change your life if, for the next 30 days, you thought about heaven for five minutes out of your day?

Take the challenge with me and report your findings.

Continue Reading Heavenly Vs. Earthly Good

My Strength

For the director of music. Of David the servant of the Lord. He sang to the Lord the words of this song when the Lord delivered him from the hand of all his enemies and from the hand of Saul. He said:

I love you, Lord, my strength. Psalm 18:1

My strength when I am weak.
My strength when I feel strong.

My strength when I can’t go on any longer.
My strength when I can go the distance.

My strength when my eyes fail me.
My strength when I have 20/20 vision.

My strength in the storm.
My strength in the bright sunshine.

My strength when I am needy.
My strength when I need nothing.

The paradox of these statements is that we know clearly when we need His strength. It’s the times we think we don’t need that strength that we need it the most, for when we rely on our own strength, we’re doomed to fail.

I love you, Lord, my strength.

Continue Reading My Strength

Confrontation

Rise up, Lord, confront them, bring them down;
    with your sword rescue me from the wicked.
By your hand save me from such people, Lord,
    from those of this world whose reward is in this life.
May what you have stored up for the wicked fill their bellies;
    may their children gorge themselves on it,
    and may there be leftovers for their little ones.
As for me, I will be vindicated and will see your face;
    when I awake, I will be satisfied with seeing your likeness. Psalm 17:13-15

Some people love confrontation. They love the thought of challenging people and situations, and of course they love the end results: a resolution.

Others, however, dislike confrontation because it’s messy and painful and “in your face.” They’d much rather a situation go unresolved than to deal with the immediate pain and messiness.

But it’s interesting in these verses because David is asking God to confront his enemies. Why? If David had confronted them, he wouldn’t make it out alive. His enemies were out for blood.

Sometimes that’s the only way we have of confronting people: through God. I doubt it’s God’s preferred method of confrontation (because God is the God of reconciliation among other characteristics), but when situations become such that face-to-face or phone-to-phone confrontations are impossible, going through God is an option. If confrontation would endanger you, it’s the only option.

In our cloistered and private world we find ourselves in, it would be far too easy to pray (for God to confront) and not confront, but I believe God would like us, as far as it is possible, to live peaceably with all men (Romans 12:8).

Continue Reading Confrontation