In Psalm 3 the first Psalm of our reading today one verse really ministered to my heart,
“I lay down and slept; I awoke, for the Lord sustains me.” –Psalm 3:5
How many nights have I been sleepless with worry, with stress, with fear? David’s own son was trying to usurp him, his own son had chased him out of the city he was king over. Yet David slept. This sentiment is again expressed in regards to a different matter in Psalm 4,
“In peace I will both lie down AND sleep, for you alone, O Lord, make me to dwell in safety.” –Psalm 4:8
Oh Jesus, help me to sleep even when crisis is in my life because I am at peace with You!
In Psalm 4 there was similarly a line that struck me,
“Tremble and do not sin…” –Psalm 4:4a
David acknowledges his fear, trembling is not the problem it is when that fear leads to sin. I’ll use something that most feel is innocuous in our modern society, but I see it as a result of sin in my life. As I have gotten older I’ve found that I deal with my stresses, anxieties by eating. Late at night when I can’t sleep to take my mind off the problem, I eat. To me this is sin. It is putting comfort in food, rather than God, “Tremble and do not sin…”
“Meditate in your heart upon your bed, and be still.” (4:4b)
David acknowledges anxiety, he lays down and thinks upon, meditates upon God, and then he is still. Oh Jesus, keep me from sinning in my stress!
And finally in the last Psalm of the day, Psalm 5 the following text convicted me,
“In the morning, O Lord, You will hear my voice; In the morning I will order my prayer to you and eagerly watch.” (5:3)
Some neglect the first part of this verse, but many more probably neglect the last part of this verse.
David makes a commitment to God, “when I get up in the morning God You will hear from me!” Many of us do this though some of us don’t do it as often as we should.
But it was the second part of this text that convicted my heart to the core,
“I will order my prayer to you and EAGERLY WATCH.” (5:3b)
I read that “watch” in a couple different ways all equally convicting.
The second time I read it through (the first time I read each of these Psalms I got nothing, so I prayed and asked God to open my eyes and this blog is what He revealed to me after that prayer) this word “watch” meant to me that after I finish talking to God in the morning I won’t just rise-up and go on with my day as if nothing happened, no I will “watch” to see how God answers those prayers I prayed in the morning. I don’t believe enough folk do this. We pray and then don’t even keep our eyes open to see how God will answer.
But then the third or fourth time I read this Psalm the “watch” took on a different meaning to me, based on the rest of the Psalm following this verse.
I will “eagerly KEEP watch” so that I do not leave the presence of Jesus which I entered into in my morning prayers.
Why did I understand it in this way? Because verses 4-12 are all about staying in the ways of the Lord, not falling into sin. Not getting distracted by the wickedness of the world, staying on the pathway of God.
Both these ways of “watching” mean something to me, I will watch to see how the Lord works, and I will watch to make sure I prayerfully remain in Jesus’ presence all day long and not just in the morning!
Tomorrow’s Reading: Job 3-4