Daily Devotional: Psalms 37:18-24
18 The days of the blameless are known to the LORD, and their inheritance will endure forever. 19 In times of disaster they will not wither; in days of famine they will enjoy plenty. 20 But the wicked will perish: The LORD's enemies will be like the beauty of the fields, they will vanish--vanish like smoke. 21 The wicked borrow and do not repay, but the righteous give generously; 22 those the LORD blesses will inherit the land, but those he curses will be cut off. 23 If the LORD delights in a man's way, he makes his steps firm; 24 though he stumble, he will not fall, for the LORD upholds him with his hand.
4 You adulterous people, don't you know that friendship with the world is hatred toward God? Anyone who chooses to be a friend of the world becomes an enemy of God. 5 Or do you think Scripture says without reason that the spirit he caused to live in us envies intensely? 6 But he gives us more grace. That is why Scripture says: “God opposes the proud but gives grace to the humble.”
Who needs God? We live in a land of plenty, we manage our own affairs and we make our own living and supply all our needs. Who needs to follow the Bible? We treat others fairly and we are pretty good people. In fact, we are better than most of the other people we know. This is the attitude of Nebuchadnezzar who boasted of all he had attained, having done so on his own. He was a self-made man. He was wealthy and needed nothing – certainly not God to tell him what to do!
After his boasting he spent the next seven years as an animal in the fields. His hair and nails grew, the dew was on his back and he ate grass like the cattle. He said that after his senses came to him, he recognized that it was God who made him what he was and had given him the victories over his enemies. All of his pride and boasting were in vain and were foolishness. He learned his lesson.
God loves us and it grieves him when we fail to honor him and give him the glory for all things in our lives. When we put our trust in anything other than him and his majesty, we become his enemies and face his wrath. But when we turn to him, he gives us grace and draws us closer to him, his care and his protection.
Thank you God for loving me. Forgive me for my pride and my foolish desire to be in control. Help me open my heart to you, to your bidding and to your way. Thank you for the physical health I enjoy and I ask you to help me use all I have and all I am to bring glory to you and to your matchless name. Use me to help others serve you and to encourage those who are struggling to be faithful. At the same time, give me strength to overcome the temptations I face each day. Protect those who face daily persecution for serving you. I pray in the name of Jesus.