29 January 2018

Luke 6
Psalm 4

Answer me when I call to you,
    my righteous God.
Give me relief from my distress;
    have mercy on me and hear my prayer.

How long will you people turn my glory into shame?
    How long will you love delusions and seek false gods?
Know that the Lord has set apart his faithful servant for himself;
    the Lord hears when I call to him.

Tremble and do not sin;
    when you are on your beds,
    search your hearts and be silent.
Offer the sacrifices of the righteous
    and trust in the Lord.

Many, Lord, are asking, “Who will bring us prosperity?”
    Let the light of your face shine on us.
Fill my heart with joy
    when their grain and new wine abound.

In peace I will lie down and sleep,
    for you alone, Lord,
    make me dwell in safety.

Psalm 4:1-8

Where do we find comfort and guidance after a rough day, week, month or year?

Usually, we think the answer lies within ourselves, we vent, stew over the situation and scheme the many ways we can solve our problems. Often our problems and difficulties, we think, are rooted in other people; and because relational difficulties are the most complicated and emotive, we think the solution lies in changing people or dealing with them in our way.

The psalmist, David, takes a different avenue, he directs himself and his life to God, (vs1) “be gracious to me and hear my prayer.” He has come to the end of a long day (vs8), having endured disrespect and insults (vs2), which have stirred up anger within (v4). Instead of self-resolve, he finds refuge in the Lord, “Know that the Lord has set apart the faithful for himself; the Lord will hear when I call to him” (vs3) and more than just refuge he finds comfort and the blessing of joy and rest (vs9).

The Lord not only provides comfort but guidance too, “Be angry and do not sin; on your bed, reflect in your heart and be still” (vs4). Jesus says in Luke 6:27-28, “But I say to you who listen: Love your enemies, do what is good to those who hate you, bless those who curse you, pray for those who mistreat you.” The truth is, in our natural selves, our response to life’s conflict is to hate and curse or set people straight with our power but in God’s economy, it’s very different. God’s way is love, He will change people, He will help us and He will comfort us.

So, as we come to the end of a rough day, week, or month we find comfort and guidance in the Lord. Psalm 4:8, “I will both lie down and sleep in peace, for you alone, Lord, make me live in safety.”