Highlights In Today's Reading:
We begin with the best loved chapter in the Old Testament
The Lord is my shepherd; I shall not want. He maketh me to lie down in green pastures: He leadeth me beside the still waters. He restoreth my soul: He leadeth me in the paths of righteousness for His name's sake. Yea, though I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I will fear no evil: for Thou art with me; Thy rod and Thy staff they comfort me. Thou preparest a table before me in the presence of mine enemies: Thou anointest my head with oil my cup runneth over. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life: and I will dwell in the House of the Lord for ever (23:1-6). A Messianic Psalm, 24 foretells His triumphal entry into glory. We can all take some of the petitions in Psalm 25 as our own, read it often. Then, David, knowing he is hopeless without God, pleads, praises, and rejoices in times of depression and times of strength. He describes The Voice of the Lord (29:3-5,7-9)-learn to recognize it! The reading ends in a loving song of thankfulness as David dedicates his palace.
After David's recovery from an affliction which had very nearly proven fatal, he testified: Thou hast brought up my soul from the grave: Thou hast kept me alive (Psalm 30:3). He commenced with praise to God for His goodness and called upon all who, like himself, had known the loving-kindness of Jehovah, to join him in his thanksgiving. Distress of body or mind is common, and sooner or later it comes to almost everyone. Affliction was the instrument that God used to prompt David to write his wonderful Psalm, glorifying our wonderful Lord. He was driven to earnest prayer, and earnest prayer always leads to praise. The Psalmist saw the hand of God in his recovery. Thou hast lifted me up (30:1). We overcome the fears of affliction when we recognize that it is not chance but God that lifted us up.
Whatever else God in mercy and wisdom may have in mind for His children who experience afflictions, there is one thing very clear — the Lord is near those who are suffering. What a comforting word! The Lord is near in all His tenderness and love, in all His power and grace. Many are the afflictions of the righteous: but the Lord delivereth him out of them all (34:19). Furthermore, affliction is a means of drawing the believer closer to God. Before I was afflicted I went astray; but now have I kept Thy Word (119:67). The disciple who trusts in Him shall never be disappointed.
We had the sentence of death in ourselves, that we should not trust in ourselves, but in God which raiseth the dead (II Corinthians 1:9).
Thought for Today:
Depression is a very real problem for almost all of us. Giving praise to the Lord, even when we don't feel like it brings powerful deliverance
As our Shepherd (Psalm 23). Christ called Himself the Good Shepherd and vowed to lay down His life for the sheep (John 10:11).
26:1 slide =b> waver, fall; 26:2 reins =b> inner self; 26:4 dissemblers =b> pretenders, hypocrites; 28:2 holy oracle =b> Holy of Holies in the Temple (inner sanctuary); 28:3 mischief =b> malice.
Pray for International Shortwave Radio Broadcasts in memory of Letha Hash • Staff: Michael Sharp • Government Officials: Rep. Jo Ann Davis (VA), Rep. Virginia Foxx (NC), and Rep. Collin Peterson (MN) • Country: Togo (5 million) in western Africa • Major languages: French and several African languages • Limited religious freedom • 41% belief in false gods and voodoo; 32% Roman Catholic; 19% Muslim; 8% Protestant • Prayer Suggestion: Pray for grace to overcome temptation, and God will reward you (James 1:12).
Optional Reading: Colossians 2
Memory Verse for the Week: 2 Corinthians 4:7