Here’s the Deal

15 Nov

Psalm 108 is at first glance a praise hymn. However, by the time you get to the end of it, it sounds like the tribe of Israel’s request for God to win them victory for land and resources.

I wonder how often our praise to God ends up really being a request for something. I am not sure this is a bad thing . . . it’s a thing.

Here is where I am at today. I realize that if I think about me – my life, my circumstances, my work, my “whatever” – I get sad or discontented. Thinking about what could be, thinking about what isn’t. BUT, if I think about God and what God is able to do in my life, then happiness ensues. I find this interesting and consider the psalmist praise of God as a way life and hope a teachable moment.

1-2 I’m ready, God, so ready,
ready from head to toe.
Ready to sing,
ready to raise a God-song:
“Wake, soul! Wake, lute!
Wake up, you sleepyhead sun!”
3-6 I’m thanking you, God, out in the streets,
singing your praises in town and country.
The deeper your love, the higher it goes;
every cloud’s a flag to your faithfulness.
Soar high in the skies, O God!
Cover the whole earth with your glory!
And for the sake of the one you love so much,
reach down and help me—answer me!

Perhaps this is the true human state every morning – to wake each morning and cry out to God for help. The writer sees the beauty and hope of a new morning and depends on that power to make it through the day.

7-9 That’s when God spoke in holy splendor:
“Brimming over with joy,
I make a present of Shechem,
I hand out Succoth Valley as a gift.
Gilead’s in my pocket,
to say nothing of Manasseh.
Ephraim’s my hard hat,
Judah my hammer.
Moab’s a scrub bucket—
I mop the floor with Moab,
Spit on Edom,
rain fireworks all over Philistia.”

The writer uses the current relationships with the countries around them to talk about God’s power in those relationships. Moab and Edom do not come off well in this psalm.
But the question becomes, “Who will carry God into the places of our world?”
Of course, for the writer it is about tribal supremacy, but I think God still needs to be made real in our world for different reasons today.

10-11 Who will take me to the thick of the fight?
Who’ll show me the road to Edom?
You aren’t giving up on us, are you, God?
refusing to go out with our troops?
12-13 Give us help for the hard task;
human help is worthless.
In God we’ll do our very best;
he’ll flatten the opposition for good.

It is God who has the power to transform our minds and spirits and lives. It is God who can open us to opportunities and possibilities we could never imagine. It is in God that we can truly live and move and have our being.


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