“Why am I so depressed? Why this turmoil within me? Put your hope in God, for I will still praise Him, my Savior and my God.” (Psalm 42:11)
Many psychologists believe talking to ourselves, done correctly, is a normal and beneficial practice. Evidently, the Psalmist who penned today’s leading verse, also knew the benefits of self-talk.
The author started this psalm by describing his perceived unfulfilled desire for God’s presence. He recounted how his enemy taunted him with accusations that His God had abandoned him. He also recalled times when He was highly involved in kingdom work by helping lead the processions of his people in praise to God. This caused him to look to the past with longing and likely led him to doubt his usefulness in God’s kingdom in the future.
There will likely be times in our lives when we can identify with the Psalmist. We long to feel God’s presence yet only be able to recall a time in the past when we clearly sensed He was walking with us. Those who oppose our faith, might try to cause us to doubt if God is involved in our lives at all. We may struggle to imagine being used by God in the future. If you find yourself in that place—try the Psalmist’s approach and talk to yourself. Ask yourself if you are standing on truth or feelings? Then, as the Psalmist did, give yourself a direct order: “Put your hope in God.” Our hope is not in the past, the future, our ability to answer our enemies or our ability to manage our emotions. As the old hymn says, “My hope is built on nothing less than Jesus' blood and righteousness.”
Question: Do you ever feel far from God? Do you wonder if He can use you in His plans?
Challenge: Read Hebrews 13:5, Philippians 1:6, Psalm 46:1 and Jeremiah 29:11.
Prayer: God, thank you for being trustworthy. I know you will always be with me and you will carry out Your plan for me. Give me wisdom and faith to believe that. Amen.
-- Chris Hail, Chapel Leader -- Jackson Generals
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