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Yes! You Can!

This is a really good message from Peachtree Presbyterian Church. The Holidays can be stressful at times and planning our goals for the new year can be too! Just remember, Yes, You Can!

O fear the Lord, you his holy ones,

 for those who fear him have no want.

—Psalm 34:9

 In Psalm 34, David is an aging teacher offering the wisdom of his life to a gathering of children and young adults. He begins by charging them to:

Fear the Lord.

We know that the fear of the Lord is not dread, but reverence. So why use the word fear? In part it is because of the visceral intensity that the word fear carries. Similarly, God intends for our relationship with Him to be more than just a pleasant association, but rather a life-and-death passion. This kind of fear-packed reverence has been illustrated in this way:

An unfaithful husband fears that his wife WILL come home while a faithful husband fears that his wife WON’T come home.

A fear-shaped reverence for God cannot conceive of life apart from God.

David goes on to make the curious announcement that those who fear the Lord lack no good thing. Is he kidding? Lack no good thing? Need has a different shape in every person’s life. Every person you will ever meet, every person you will encounter today is a beggar at some life-and-death point in their life. D.T. Niles used just the right words to describe us:

Christianity is one beggar telling another where he found bread.

This sense of beggarly-lack ignites in us all sorts of explosive habits, fears, perversions, heartaches, and desires. We once hauled our tent trailer and 4 children 3 ½ hours over a rutted road in the wilderness of northeast Nevada. Friends had told us of a beautiful, remote campground. The last half mile descended a treacherously steep and twisting ribbon of road. I was afraid to start down for fear the weight of the trailer would push us over the cliff. But our friends had included a penciled map and in caps had written with exclamation points, “YES, YOU CAN!!” That’s what David means when he says, you will lack no good thing. God will supply you with just exactly what you need at the moment you need it. Every word in the Bible is part of God’s great YES, YOU CAN assurance to all us beggars.

David goes on to add that this YES, YOU CAN from God is so profound that it elevates the way we speak and purifies our behavior.

And when the Christmas season ends, be careful not to tone down the intensity of your life with Jesus and pack it away in the attic until next year.

Take this from King David, a man who as much as anyone who ever lived, had been bullied about by his inner-beggar and had learned that the fear of the Lord was God’s way of saying, YES, YOU CAN!

Questions for Further Reflection:

Where in your life do you think of yourself as a beggar?

How does this deep sense of need influence the way you live?

How does it impact the way you respond to others to see them as a beggar just like you?

Prayer:

O Lord, I wish I wasn’t needy. I wish I had it all together in my life. But that’s not the way I am. Teach me the way of humble reverence toward you, toward others, and toward myself. May my need find its fulfillment in the vast wonder of your love. Amen.

Psalm 34:9-14

O fear the Lord, you his holy ones,

 for those who fear him have no want.

 The young lions suffer want and hunger,

 but those who seek the Lord lack no good thing.

 Come,  children, listen to me;

 I will teach you the fear of the Lord.

 Which of you desires life,

 and covets many days to enjoy good?

 Keep your tongue from evil,

 and your lips from speaking deceit.

 Depart from evil, and do good;

 seek peace, and pursue it.

Copyright © 2016 Peachtree Presbyterian Church, All rights reserved.

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