Saturday, October 27, 2012

A Calm and Quiet Soul

A Song of Ascents. Of David. O LORD, my heart is not lifted up; my eyes are not raised too high; I do not occupy myself with things too great and too marvelous for me.
But I have calmed and quieted my soul, like a weaned child with its mother; like a weaned child is my soul within me. O Israel, hope in the LORD from this time forth and forever.

I love this short Psalm; so much said in so few words. In my Bible I have verse one marked with a Matthew Henry comment about haughty eyes, "Don't look with envy at those who are above me, or disdain those perceived to be below me." Thoughts are as loud as words in heaven and pride is a fearful enemy.

I am not one who struggles with a lot of "whys." It isn't because I haven't been blindsided nor had unexplainable loss, because I have. Early on I was taught about the sovereignty of God. This passage from Job pretty well sums it up for me. It has kept me from occupying myself  with things too great for my smallness and limited view.

 Then the LORD answered Job out of the whirlwind and said: "Who is this that darkens counsel by words without knowledge?
Dress for action like a man; I will question you, and you make it known to me.
Where were you when I laid the foundation of the earth? Tell me, if you have understanding." Job 38:1-4

God is God and His ways are past finding out. He has made many great and exceeding precious promises to His people. As the song says, "When you can't trace His hand, trust His heart." So it seems in the big things I tend to trust him.

It's the smaller things that trip me up. As it says in the Song of Solomon
"Catch the foxes for us, The little foxes that are ruining the vineyards, While our vineyards are in blossom."
It's my plans not working out or someone laying something on me that I didn't expect. It's the volunteer not showing up when they promised they would. I find myself going into "what now?" mode. That always makes me vulnerable to losing my peace and slipping into an attitude that doesn't reflect who I am in Christ. It is a sudden jolt that makes me forget to send up a prayer for wisdom and insight for a solution that will help me to move forward with a good attitude. It is here that we are working hard right now. "A calm and quiet soul," weaned from thinking it must all be under my control or work out the way I planned it. What a stress reliever it is to know that He is sovereign over this as well. It makes me lean in, take a deep breath, and know that it will work out. It may not be pretty, but it will be taken care of, and I can stay calm and more importantly quiet. No murmuring or fouling the air with my petty remarks. I so want to walk in this perfectly consistently. Don't you? Just picture a child weaned and content being born along by a loving parent who knows growing up can be hard.

My prayer: Lord, you knew these surprises were on the horizon. It has not caught you off guard.  Help me to stay calm and quiet with full trust that You've got this, and I don't. You want me to turn to you in quietness and confidence and there I will find strength. In Jesus name, amen.

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