Daily Devotional: Psalms 44:17-26
17 All this happened to us, though we had not forgotten you or been false to your covenant. 18 Our hearts had not turned back; our feet had not strayed from your path. 19 But you crushed us and made us a haunt for jackals and covered us over with deep darkness. 20 If we had forgotten the name of our God or spread out our hands to a foreign god, 21 would not God have discovered it, since he knows the secrets of the heart? 22 Yet for your sake we face death all day long; we are considered as sheep to be slaughtered. 23 Awake, O Lord! Why do you sleep? Rouse yourself! Do not reject us forever. 24 Why do you hide your face and forget our misery and oppression? 25 We are brought down to the dust; our bodies cling to the ground. 26 Rise up and help us; redeem us because of your unfailing love.
11 No discipline seems pleasant at the time, but painful. Later on, however, it produces a harvest of righteousness and peace for those who have been trained by it. 12 Therefore, strengthen your feeble arms and weak knees.
As a preacher, one of the most often questions I get asked is “why”? Why is this happening to me? Why did this happen to my loved one? Why? Why? The truth is that often we do not know why things happen as they do. At times good people suffer while the wicked prosper and at other times the good seem to prosper and the wicked perish. Jesus said God sends the rain on the just and on the unjust.
Trials, problems, temptations and all kinds of things happen for different reasons, some obvious and some not. “Why” is not the real issue but what we do with them, what we allow them to do to us and how we handle them. We can take each trial and let it draw us closer to God or we can let it destroy our faith.
Some are persecuted and even killed because of their faith. Some (like Job) face all kinds of trials because of living right and Satan just wants to prove he can ruin them. Some are blessed because they are serving God, as Job, before and after his trials. Then, “time and chance” may also play a part in why things happen. James says when we draw near to God and he will draw near to us. Praise the Lord!
Heavenly Father I am thankful for the trials that help me grow closer to you. I do not like to suffer or be in pain of any kind but I also know that these may be a test of my faith and that suffering produces endurance when accompanied by faith. I want a life of peace but I also know that this world is filled with turmoil. I see so much sin and I ask that this will always distress me and not lure me. Thank you for the freedoms I have in this country. Be with our rulers and give them wisdom so we can live peaceful and quite lives. I pray in the name of Jesus my Lord.