Being Capable - Psalm Sunday

>> Sunday, June 22, 2008

At church today, we talked about strongholds - those things that hold us back and keep us from growing or reaching our full potential in Christ. We talked about the story of the lame man and his friends who carried him to see Jesus and lowered him through the roof to get healed and forgiven. He wanted to see Jesus but couldn't get there without the help of his friends to overcome his strongholds. As a couple people were sharing about themselves, it occurred to me that one of my biggest strongholds is this feeling of being capable. All my life I have been told, directly and indirectly, that I am capable of almost anything. If I want it, if I work hard enough, I can accomplish almost anything. While not a horrible message to instill in your kids, I think it has kept me from going to the deeper places of spiritual vulnerability needed for growth. It is sometimes hard for me to let my friends carry me to Jesus, like the lame man's friends did. After all, I am very capable of taking care of myself and getting things done. But with all that has happened in my life the last few years, not the least of which is learning how to parent a 2 yr. old, I think the notion that I am independently capable of most things is diminishing. Few things remind you of your own limitations like trying to convince a reluctant toddler to take a nap or eat his "non-hot dog" dinner. While thinking more about this today, this Psalm came to my mind. Especially verse 2- "My soul will boast in the Lord." Not in my own capabilities. Lord, help me to take my refuge in You and not in my own strength and abilities. Stay near to me, Lord, protect me from evil and teach me to fear You.

Psalm 34

1 I will extol the LORD at all times; his praise will always be on my lips.
2 My soul will boast in the LORD; let the afflicted hear and rejoice.
3 Glorify the LORD with me; let us exalt his name together.
4 I sought the LORD, and he answered me; he delivered me from all my fears.
5 Those who look to him are radiant; their faces are never covered with shame.
6 This poor man called, and the LORD heard him; he saved him out of all his troubles.
7 The angel of the LORD encamps around those who fear him, and he delivers them.
8 Taste and see that the LORD is good; blessed is the man who takes refuge in him.
9 Fear the LORD, you his saints, for those who fear him lack nothing.
10 The lions may grow weak and hungry, but those who seek the LORD lack no good thing.
11 Come, my children, listen to me; I will teach you the fear of the LORD.
12 Whoever of you loves life and desires to see many good days,
13 keep your tongue from evil and your lips from speaking lies.
14 Turn from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it.
15 The eyes of the LORD are on the righteous and his ears are attentive to their cry;
16 the face of the LORD is against those who do evil, to cut off the memory of them from the earth.
17 The righteous cry out, and the LORD hears them; he delivers them from all their troubles.
18 The LORD is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit.
19 A righteous man may have many troubles, but the LORD delivers him from them all;
20 he protects all his bones, not one of them will be broken.
21 Evil will slay the wicked; the foes of the righteous will be condemned.
22 The LORD redeems his servants; no one will be condemned who takes refuge in him.

Jesus, I am Resting
Jesus, I am resting, resting, In the joy of what Thou art;
I am finding out the greatness of Thy loving heart.
Thou hast bid me gaze upon Thee, and Thy beauty fills my soul,
For by Thy transforming power, thou hast made me whole.

Jesus, I am resting, resting, In the joy of what Thou art;
I am finding out the greatness of Thy loving heart.

O, how great Thy loving kindness, vaster, broader than the sea!
O, how marvelous Thy goodness, lavished all on me!
Yes, I rest in Thee, Belov├Ęd, know what wealth of grace is Thine,
Know Thy certainty of promise, and have made it mine.

Simply trusting Thee, Lord Jesus, I behold Thee as Thou art,
And Thy love, so pure, so changeless, satisfies my heart;
Satisfies its deepest longings, meets, supplies its every need,
Compasseth me round with blessings:Thine is love indeed!

Ever lift Thy face upon me as I work and wait for Thee;
Resting ’neath Thy smile, Lord Jesus, earth’s dark shadows flee.
Brightness of my Father’s glory, sunshine of my Father’s face,
Keep me ever trusting, resting, fill me with Thy grace.

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