People Needing People

6 I said, “Oh, that I had the wings of a dove! I would fly away and be at rest. 7 I would flee far away and stay in the desert; 8 I would hurry to my place of shelter, far from the tempest and storm.” Psalm 55:6-8

We all feel like this at times. We just want to pack it up and go away for about 3 years; that should settle everything! But we can’t.

We have obligations, bills, mortgages, family, friends, and jobs to worry about. The fact is, it probably wouldn’t do us a bit of good since some of the same problems would occur wherever you finally ended up. The problems would be different but the stresses would be similar. In other words, we don’t live in a vacuum. God intended us to live with others, or as some would say, “in community.” Even though I could easily work by myself most days of the week, I realize that’s not a healthy way to live. We need people. Of course I hear the extroverts cheering that statement, to which I would respond, “and those who are around people all day need to spend time in a bit of solitude reflecting the day’s events.”

We all need people. Some of us need people more than others. While we might like to think that getting away from it all for years at a time would be a great way to live, it’s probably not wise. After all, recall there will be other people in heaven. Yes, things will be different there, but still, people will be there.

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G.I.G.O.

4 My heart is in anguish within me;
    the terrors of death have fallen on me.
5 Fear and trembling have beset me;
    horror has overwhelmed me. Psalm 55:4-5

King David had really high highs and really low lows! He’s desperate here. I suspect that his internal turmoil has a big affect on what is happening on the outside. In other words, I think all the weight of his sin is influencing his words here. To be certain, he was a hunted man, but combine that with carrying the weight of your sins on your shoulders, and it’s no wonder he’s in such a mess.

It happens with us, though probably not to such an extreme. What I mean by that is that what is happening on our inside affects what comes out of our mouths

But the things that come out of the mouth come from the heart, and these are the things that make you ritually unclean. For from your heart come the evil ideas which lead you to kill, commit adultery, and do other immoral things; to rob, lie, and slander others. Matthew 15:18-10

It seems to be even more prevalent in our dreams. As we try to process information, the weirdest dreams will emerge. You can usually trace it back to something heard or seen or said a night or two before.

Guard your heart for it is the wellspring of life. Proverbs 4:23

**G.I.G.O. is an old computer programming term for ‘garbage in garbage out.’

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One Reason

2     hear me and answer me.
My thoughts trouble me and I am distraught
3     because of what my enemy is saying,
    because of the threats of the wicked;
for they bring down suffering on me
    and assail me in their anger. Psalm 55:2-3

Part of verse two seems to harken back to the previous psalm, “Let evil recoil on those who slander me.” David’s thoughts are troubling because of people who are threatening him. I’m certain it troubles him because he does know that “It is mine to avenge; I will repay. In due time their foot will slip; their day of disaster is near and their doom rushes upon them.” Deuteronomy 32:35

So, on the one hand I exhorted my readers to bring it all to the Lord, including the negative and hateful feelings. On the other is the reality of those situations. Even though we would like to exact revenge right then and there, it’s not our role. God has His way of dealing with that person, and it’s often not the way we would have done it. That’s okay because, well, thankfully we’re not God and do not have a perfect view of the world.

It’s certainly one reason to be thankful one day after Thanksgiving.

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The Workload

Listen to my prayer, O God,
    do not ignore my plea; Psalm 55:1

“Go away. Don’t bother me! Can’t you see I’m busy with 7 billion other people? Your troubles are nothing compared to the rest of the world. Come back to me when you have real problems.”

You have never heard those words from the Lord nor will you ever. But sometimes we probably think that we’re disturbing Him with our requests. After all, He does have 7 billion to look after. But we often forget is that dealing with 7 billion people is but nothing to God. He doesn’t even “break a sweat” or ring his hands worrying about all their problems – our problems. Not even a bit. How do I know this?

Have you ever looked up into the sky on a clear Summer night? Astronomers estimate there are 100-300 Billion stars in our Milky Way galaxy. They also say there are hundreds of billions of galaxies out there. These are numbers we cannot possibly comprehend. God put them all there (and more are being discovered each year). If God created all of that, plus the billions of people on earth, do you really think his “workload” is really ever stretched when it comes to us? No, but it does prove the utter awesomeness of God almighty.

So, when you ask, “Listen to my prayer, O God,” you can be sure He’s listening and encouraging you all the way.

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Assurances?

7 You have delivered me from all my troubles,
    and my eyes have looked in triumph on my foes. Psalm 54:7

You could easily read this verse two very different ways. First, and quite probably they interpretation most would like to take, is to think that your life will be error-free once you start serving the Lord. While it makes for nice bumper sticker text, it’s just not played out in most people’s lives. We have mortgages, clothes, bills, taxes, and cars to buy with a limited amount of money. Our kids get sick or go off the deep end. Our friends back stab us. And we get fired from a job we’ve loved for 10 years. So, how could it possibly be that we are delivered from all of this?

Well, it leads us to the more obvious conclusion, that when you do have trouble, He will see you through it. Then, as you look back at those who caused the trouble, you can laugh at their foolishness.

I am well aware that those reading this are not immune to trouble. In fact, the statistics would show that a great majority are experiencing trouble even as you read this. You know about the sleepless nights, the snide remarks, the added gray hairs of worry, the sense of hopelessness about your situation, and the “what could I have done differently” thinking.

But fortunately all is not lost. I don’t know the details about your situation but God does. I don’t know the battle and frustrations and anger you experience because of your troubles, but God does. I don’t make these statements lightly because I realize there are real people with real problems reading this. Yes, He will deliver you from all your troubles, but ou are right in the midst of them, and cannot see and think clearly.

Some 25+ years ago I spent three fascinating months in England. The highlight of each week was going to chapel every Sunday. The minister, without fail opened and closed with the words from James 4:8 , and what I will end this post with:

“Come close to God and He will come close to you.”

We do not have a lot of assurances in life, but that certainly is one of them.

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