Thursday, July 16, 2015

What's Keeping You Going?

I had fainted, unless I had believed to see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. -Psalm 27:13

We've talked a lot recently about trials, hard times and perilous valleys.  If anyone knew about these, it was David, the human author of Psalm 27.  Although we cannot be sure when the psalmist wrote this powerful chapter, we can be sure of one thing:  he understood heartache.  Just read through chapter 27, and you'll see a man who understands what it's like to have troubles and to have enemies. Fortunately, he also knew where to find hope.

After several verses explaining his dire situation and outlining his desire to trust, he spilled out this sentiment:  "I would have fainted if not for my faith that one day this trial would soon be over."  David knew all too well that life was full of valleys, but as he wrote in Psalm 23, God leads us through those valleys.  They are not the destination, only part of the journey.

In his darkest times, David clung to God's promise that this meager life is not all there is.  He held tightly to the hope that, one day, every wrong would be made right.  He looked beyond his current circumstances and allowed his eyes of faith to dwell on what would be.  And by his own admission, that faith kept him going, even when the way was rough.

What about you?  What keeps you going?  Sure, we can look forward to the next paycheck, but then what?  Or how about the next pay raise or the new car or the marriage?  Good things, no doubt, but unfortunately, they are also things that come and go.  The pay check is spent before it's even been deposited.  The raise still isn't enough to pay off the debt.  The new car loses a chunk of its value the minute you drive it off the lot.  And as for the marriage, well, even though it's supposed to be a union  broken only by death, the sad fact is that fifty percent of all marriages end in divorce.  So, if we're hanging all our hopes on these situations and depending on the things of this world to lend us strength, then we're in big trouble.

Let's face it, we will all have days where we feel we simply cannot carry on.  The path is too difficult.  The hill is too steep.  Our strength is gone, and we feel we have nothing left to give.  Like the psalmist, we find ourselves dizzy and out of balance, ready to faint if we're required to take one more step.  But it is during those times that we must look beyond our immediate circumstances and look forward to something that cannot be taken away.  God's goodness can be revealed, even in the midst of our sufferings.  And in those dark times, we can cling to His promise that this too shall pass.  It's going to get better. . . much better.  Hang in there!

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