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Monday, July 4, 2016

It's Good to Draw Near

Psalm 73 speaks of jealousy of the foolish and arrogant rich. These people became rich by mocking and extorting men. These wicked rich spoke against God saying He had no power over them and could not judge them. They paraded their arrogance and enticed God’s people to drink from their cup and follow them.
The psalmist saw the things the rich had and experienced temptation until he went to the sanctuary of God. He remembered God would cast these wicked rich down to destruction and would allow them to be consumed with terrors. When the psalmist recalled this, he recognized his sin and repented.  
He remembered God is good to His children, those who are upright and pure in heart. God is continually with His children, holding their right hand and guiding them. He receives them into His glory when they die and gives them honor and glory when giving them their inheritance in His kingdom.  The psalmist recalled who God is – almighty, the true desire of our hearts, our Rock and Strength, and our Portion forever. This epiphany led to his testimony and profession.
The psalmist declared God is not God of those who are far from Him. He will not receive them into His kingdom, but will destroy everyone who is false to Him. His final profession, seen from renewed eyes and heart, juxtaposed with the start of this psalm when he declared himself a child who almost slipped. Now the psalmist drew near to God, keeping his focus on Him and not himself or his temptations. He recognized God anew, put His trust in the Lord again, made Him his refuge, and determined to tell about God’s works. This psalmist no longer focused on material things - what he didn’t have or what he wanted. Instead he focused on God, the One Who is good to Israel – the pure and upright in heart.

"Whom have I in heaven but You? I have no desire or delight on earth besides You. My flesh and heart may fail, but God is the Rock and firm Strength.” (Psalm 73:25-26)

Father, help us to keep our eyes and heart focused on You and not things of this world. Help us not be jealous of the wealth of others, but find our contentment and purpose in You. Call us to draw near to You, keeping our focus on You and not ourselves. Use us today to give testimony about You to the people we meet. Amen