Tuesday, May 14, 2013

Psalm 119: 73-80 Unfailing Love

A Devotional by Margot Cioccio

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WDAQy9PSHwU&feature=share&list=PLAE37DF69613BB3F3

Yodh

73 Your strong hands formed me and established me;
give me understanding so I can learn Your commands.
74 Let those who fear You see me and rejoice
because I hope in Your word.
75 I know, O Eternal One, Your rulings are right,
and when You humbled me, You did so out of faithfulness.
76 Now let Your unfailing love be my comfort,
in keeping with Your promise to Your servant.
77 Shower me with Your compassion so that I may live
because I find great joy in Your law.
78 Let the proud be humiliated,
for they sabotage me with a lie;
still I will fix my mind on Your directives.
79 Let those who fear You and know Your testimonies
come back and find me.
80 Let my heart be whole, my record according to what You require
so that I will not be humiliated.

Your strong hands formed me and established me;
give me understanding so I can learn Your commands.


Well I started my morning with the words from Psalm 139 about God having fearfully and wonderfully made me. I suppose even when I don't fully understand myself that He does. He knows what he created me to be and to do. He understands all my quirky ways. He knows the things that push my buttons and where my tender and damaged places are even if others can no longer see them. He knows....
I then felt specifically led to read Day 2 Jehovah-Rophe in Sylvia Gunter's book Blessing Your Spirit. I got to the second paragraph and it was as if it had been written just for me. It said " Margot, God has called you to be highly creative, to color outside the the lines of your secular and religious culture. Your gifting, your specific anointing is t see new principles in God's word, to understand new facets of the nature of God, and to find new applications of the nature of God in the contemporary culture. I bless that in you. I release you from the limitations of a culture that will bind you to something smaller than that which God has called you to. We celebrate your creativity and your ability to color outside the lines of your culture." I have been doing a lot of soul searching and spending time sitting quietly with the Lord as He helps me sort it all out. I can get a wee bit introspective but its probably long over due. For so long I just kept running from the past and afraid that it might catch up to me and I'd have to deal with it. I was able to deal with some deeply buried things a few years ago and since then I have been able to stop running. I discovered that when you allow Jesus into those secret places, He does not come in with a wagging finger and an "I told you so kind of attitude". He little by little loves you back to health and life. We are upheld by the strong hands that formed us and He is happy to give us understanding.


Let those who fear You see me and rejoice
because I hope in Your word. I actually like this next bit from the Message "When they see me waiting, expecting your Word, those who fear you will take heart and be glad." How we live and walk before others is a powerful thing. I have seen some believers go through some really difficult things. I have watched their grace and courage and have seen them model faith, hope and love. I have seen patience and long-suffering and it has helped me in my own walk. We never know who is watching. We are often influencing people we had no idea were even watching. It is good when you see others modeling the character of Jesus and the fruit Spirit and the Love of the Father, that we should take heart and be glad. 

I know, O Eternal One, Your rulings are right,
and when You humbled me, You did so out of faithfulness.

Sometimes we have to humble ourselves and take a look around and admit that God has not fallen of the throne of heaven astonished by our little difficulty. Nothing that is happening to us has taken Him by surprise.

I can hear some indignantly saying "Harrumph! We how could He have stood by and let ______ happen." It is in those things that you need to go humbly before Him and ask that He to show you where He was. I think you will be astonished by his tender mercy.

Now let Your unfailing love be my comfort, in keeping with Your promise to Your servant.
Shower me with Your compassion so that I may live because I find great joy in Your law.
To know His unfailing love and to allow that to be our comfort. To walk in the assurance that no matter what He loves us. Not because of what we can do or could do. He does not love us less because of the things we did do. He simply love us with unfailing love. Then He also showers us with compassion. There is great joy to be found in God's way of doing things. Its not that He is some kill joy who wants to take away all your fun and leave you with a long list of do's and don'ts. He wants us to be fully alive and to become all He intends us to become in Him. His love is more than warm fuzzy feelings it is a commitment to walk side by side with us and to help us to become our very best in Him. 
Sometimes we hit some uncomfortable places on that journey. Places where we have to decide to stay broken and crippled by fear and doubt or to trust Him and face those terrifying changes. Sometimes I have to tell Him that I need to stop for a bit, knowing that I will go on but also knowing that sometimes I need to processes things before I can go further on the journey. I have found that He is gracious and patient.   

Let the proud be humiliated, for they sabotage me with a lie;
still I will fix my mind on Your directives.
All these lofty thoughts and then we get a jab at the proud. I am glad that it goes on with "stil I will fix my mind on Your directives. Sometimes we are upset and need to vent. God hears it all and He knows we are venting and that we will settle down and fix our mind on His directives. You know things like "love your neighbor as yourself" Some times loving those difficult people in our lives can be pretty challenging. Lord help us to taste like you when people bite into us they would find we are genuine fruit and not that fake wax kind that is used for decoration. 

Let those who fear You and know Your testimonies come back and find me.
Let my heart be whole, my record according to what You require so that I will not be humiliated. 
I have had some wonderful people come back and find me and those it is amazing to me that those friendships pick right back up even though there has been a long span of time that you had lost touch with one another. I think that sometimes He brings back people at just the right time and we are able to encourage one another and marvel at what God has done in each ones lives. So Lord let my heart be whole. We can in our pride and self-sufficiency go a long time like those cowboys in the old westerns. They have been shot with a bullet and yet they go on fighting or traveling. "Its just a little scratch" they say as they stuff a wad of dirty cloth in the wound. Even little wounds can become infected and can make you sick and if left untreated cause you to die. Spiritual wounds are important to tend to because they fester and and bitterness and other nastiness can poison your spirit. Sometimes we are so driven by our unmet needs that we try to take things into our own hands and end up with a big mess along with a still un met need. It is better to take your unmet needs to God and allow Him to work them out for you in His timing. 

Prayer: I pray that the Lord will help you to push past your fears. To turn to Him and not from Him during times of difficulty and stress. Come Lord make our hearts whole. Shower us with your compassion and let us be aware of your unfailing love. 

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