Well, it's that time again, boys and girls! Can you say, "Ten Things for Tuesdays"? Great, now go put on your slippers and sweaters and we'll all join together for a sing-along...
Whoa! Childhood flashback! Sorry about that! :-) Now, on to "Ten Lessons From Psalm 103." I have a ton of things rolling through my head and heart right now, and I hope to capture some of them here soon. But for some reason, my brain was focused on Psalm 103 when I awoke this morning, so that's what you're a-gittin'!
1. Praise! This is a command, not a feeling or a song. Recount the great things He has done. That's all it takes.
2. ...O my soul; all my inmost being... Dig deep. Praise should not come from your lips, but from your heart.
3. ...and forget not all His benefits... Wish your or your spouse's workplace provided more 'benefits'? Well, when making your list, be sure to include God's 'extras'. You know, that's really what they are: He met our greatest need in the death and resurrection of Christ. But look at all the extras He gives!
- He forgives all my sins
- He heals all my diseases
- He redeems my life from the pit
- He crowns me with love and compassion
- He satisfies my desires with good things (not just any old thing!)
- He renews my youth like the eagle's (Isaiah hasn't yet written his tome; David gives us the original 'eagle' reference--and this is waaaayy better than any youth serum you've got at home!)
4. He made known His ways to Moses... God could have remained hidden for all of eternity. He could have simply chosen to let things take their natural course: Hell for all sinners; not one of us in heaven. But He didn't! He revealed Himself to Abraham, Isaac, Jacob, Moses...He gave the law, that we might learn how very desperate we were for Him. And then, He spoke to us in person, and--for the vast majority of my readers, at least--He grafted us into the vine, that we too might be partakers of His salvation. A revealed, hidden, invisible, flesh-clad God. Who is like our God?!
5. ...He does not treat us as our sins deserve...[but] as far as the east is from the west, so far has He removed our transgressions from us. I still don't understand this kind of behavior, this kind of love. But He didn't give us what we earned; He offered us what we could never have acquired. Such mercy...
6. ...He remembers that we are dust. What if God held us to the standards of the heavenlies? Perfection? One chance? But he remembers--despite our protests to the contrary--that we are merely dust in which He breathed. He knows how very frail we are. And so, ...the Lord has compassion on those who fear Him...
7. But from everlasting to everlasting the LORD's* love is with those who fear Him... How we respond to God matters. His promises and blessings here are for those who view and treat Him with the reverence He deserves.
8. The LORD has established His throne in heaven, and His kingdom rules over all. Keep perspective. God is HUGE and POWERFUL and ATTENTIVE. He is still on His throne. The chaos you & I see and feel around us is not truly out of control.
9. Praise the LORD, you His angels... Ever ponder how your status in Christ puts you in a position to exhort others--even angels--to praise Him!? Wild stuff, this journey of ours!
10. Praise the LORD, O my soul. And one last thing: Don't forget to praise Him!
I love this Psalm, these reminders. Hope you are blessed today remembering them too! :-)
* LORD is different from Lord. These are two different names for God, and the translators have clued you in on it through the use of all caps/cap-lower case. I love LORD, as it is the name God uses for Himself to indicate His covenant-keeping-ness!