Sunday, October 01, 2006

Self Talk

"Every day in every way I'm feeling better and better." That's not in the Bible, but this one is:

Surely God is good to Israel, to those who are pure in heart
Psalm 73.1

This guy knows, sort of, that this is the way it's supposed to be. It's what God promised. It's what he wants to believe.

But then he goes on and 'fesses up: he sees the wicked prospering; they are rich and well-groomed and have plenty to eat. They don't have troubles like other people do. They order everybody around and act like they're God or something (which reminds me of a book I heard of but have never read: The Difference Between God and Larry Ellison).

This really bothers him:
Surely in vain have I kept my heart pure;
in vain have I washed my hands in innocence.
When I tried to understand all this,
it was oppressive to me
till I entered the sanctuary of God;
then I understood their final destiny.
Psalm 73.13,16-17
He goes to the Temple and then he understands that justice will eventually be done. He turns his eyes toward God, and he becomes wiser by doing that.

So what does that mean to me, today?

Here's my take on it: if we look only at the way the world is going, we are left with perplexity and despair, because so often it seems God isn't doing what he says he's about.

That is, we have to look at the world and see it, but then we have to look at God, too. Not because he'll answer all our questions, but because by turning to him, fixing our eyes on him, we'll develop a more balanced perspective. We'll remember his character, his goodness and mercy, and we'll remember that things are not totally out of control.

Which will help us to trust him more, and to be saner people. Kinder and more compassionate people. Amen?

No comments: