Do you feel confident? Me neither. In fact my life as a stupid sheep is characterized by continually forgetting important information. You too?
So, if we sheep are always forgetting our Shepherd, what can we do? The psalmist, David, knew. His secret is found in Psalm 103. This Psalm can help us to remember who we are and where we’re going. I love this chapter, because it can be applied in all circumstances. Unlike many of David’s Psalms, it is not really speaking to any particular event in his life.
Have you been feeling guilty lately? Defensive or overcompensating in some way? Perhaps you are committing to the more religious. Have you been losing sleep at night, consumed by worry? ME TOO!
Let’s do what David did and applied this passage to our life.
David begins, “Oh my soul.” This is not an is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love intellectual exercise. He is not speaking to someone else. He is addressing his heart
To it he says, “Forget not all God’s benefits”. THIS IS THE GOSPEL!
“He forgives all your sins”…NO ROOM FOR GUILT!
“He heals all your diseases”…NO MORE FEAR!
“He redeems your life from the pit”…EVEN DEATH CAN’T HAVE YOU BECAUSE YOU HAVE BEEN PAID FOR!
“He crowns you with love and compassion”…NO MORE INSECURITIES! With the “crown” God gives who cares about a “bad-hair” day?
But honestly, at this point, I need something I can sink my teeth into. What good is a crown right NOW?
“The Lord is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love.” This is a direct quote from Exodus 34:7. In Exodus it continues, “yet I will not leave the guilty unpunished.” WHY WOULD DAVID LEAVE THAT OUT? David writes, “As far as the east is from the west, so far has he removed our transgressions from us.”
How can those two things be true? I know I am guilty and deserve punishment. But in receiving the crown, I am given what I do NOT deserve. This is grace! This is the gospel!
“As a father has compassion on his children, so the Lord has compassion on those who fear him.”
When I am fearful or worrying or angry, I know I need to change. It’s as if I am bent and I need to be straightened out. Let me illustrate. If I have a golf club that is bent, I may try to bend the shaft in order to correct this. I bend it one way and it’s not enough. I bend it the other way and overcompensate. The struggle never fixes the problem and eventually the metal is weakened to the point of breaking in two.
The answer is to heat up the metal to the point of making it malleable. With proper heat and skilled treatment the golf club can be restored.
This Psalm is about heating up your heart. It’s about letting the gospel warm the cold places and letting the Holy Spirit skillfully restore your perspectives.
Let the vision of Christ dying for you humble you. Let the compassionate embrace of God, your father, give you strength.
Praise the Lord! LISTEN SOUL! I CAN BE CONFIDENT IN YOU!