Saturday, July 16, 2016

False Hope


Scripture
Psa. 30:6        As for me, I said in my prosperity,
        “I shall never be moved.”
7     By your favor, O LORD,
        you had established me as a strong mountain;
    you hid your face;
        I was dismayed.

Observation

David found himself in a new position of political and financial prosperity. No longer did he have enemies chasing after him but life had settled down and he had everything that he could have humanly thought one could want. The temptation was to feel overly secure, that his confidence might turn into conceit. But there is no greater temptation in life as to suddenly be lulled by tranquility. Just because one has plenty of resources today does not mean that it will last. It was Divine favor which brought David his prosperity and yet in this Psalm he reveals that which brings him fear.

David’s joy had always been dependent upon the presence of the Lord but he had allowed his success to seduce his heart. He believed that he was a strong mountain, so strong that he could no longer be affected by adversity. Suddenly he discovered that God was displeased with his pride and David was reflecting his treasures, rather than the face of God. The shock of this was more than David could bear for he was no longer reflecting God, but his own material and temporary treasures. He had developed a false sense of hope and security, in the things he had accumulated and these were nothing in light of seeking the face of God.

Application

There have been times in life when I have thought…”If only I had…” and that usually ended with some kind of financial resource. Hey — I grew up a missionary kid and then a preacher’s kid. We never did have a lot of financial resources and yet, as I reflect, I have had a great life. The best moments in life have had nothing to do with worldly or financial resources — but with relationships. Relationships with other people and with the Lord.

Birthday parties in Russia are some of my best memories. In Russia the person with the birthday has the party at their home. The party is usually a nice dinner, sitting around the table with friends and family. It’s about the fellowship — not about the stuff. Conversation can last for hours and there may even be some singing and game playing. Much joy!

When we become consumed with building our financial kingdom and the accumulation of things we become distracted and almost without notice we take our eyes off the Lord. It is so easy to become so busy that we forget to seek his face and then comes the moment when we feel that he has hidden his face from us, when in reality we are the ones who have lost touch with him. David was dismayed when he found himself in this spot. There is nothing more life-giving than a face to face relationship with our holy God. He is the one who leads us day by day and will always be with us no matter what the day may bring.

Money, power, prestige and security can all be lost in an instant. We never know what tomorrow may bring for the things of this world are out of the realm of our power and control. Last night it was an attempted coup in Turkey. Two days ago it was a man on a rampage with a truck killing people in France. A week ago it was racial tensions tearing up a nation. A few weeks ago it was a vote for “Brexit” that sent the world markets tumbling. What will happen today or tomorrow? Who knows, but God remains the same. He is our constant and he is our hope. Placing our trust in the things of this world is fleeting at best. Seek the face of the One who will remain the same will lead us into the everlasting.

Prayer

Lord, please help me not to be enamored by false hope. Amen.

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