Dependence on God; July 24, 2019


Psalms 18:1 I love you, O Lord, my strength.

David was at his best when he recognized his dependence on God. Actually, that can be said of anyone! We human beings have the odd conceit that we can get by on our own, that we really don’t need God or anyone else. How foolish! The Japanese for this verse, instead of saying “love,” says “desire,” as in the deer desiring water in Psalm 42:1. You could say that David was addicted to God, and that’s a wonderful way to be. When astrophysicists study the universe they use terms like “strong force” and “weak force,” because the more they study things, the more impossible they realize they are. By rights, the universe shouldn’t exist! At every level, all the way down to subatomic particles, there are contradictions and logical impossibilities. What keeps it all together? Physicists can’t really say, which is why they use such vague terms. What, for heaven’s sake, is “dark energy?” Paul had a simple answer to all of that: “He is the image of the invisible God, the firstborn over all creation. For by him all things were created: things in heaven and on earth, visible and invisible, whether thrones or powers or rulers or authorities; all things were created by him and for him. He is before all things, and in him all things hold together.” (Colossians 1:15-17) In other words, Christ is the “cosmic glue” that astrophysicists are searching for! David had a much simpler view of things, and he just said, “O Lord, my strength.” None of this is to say that God hasn’t gifted each of us with various abilities, or that we aren’t to use those abilities to accomplish various things. Jesus’ parable of the talents removes all doubt on that point. (Matthew 25:14-30) However, we’ve got to remember that God is the source of it all, and give Him the thanks and praise that He alone deserves.

This has been an issue all of my life. The Lord blessed me in so many ways from birth that when I took the aptitude testing in the Army I qualified in every category, which is virtually unheard of. The big problem was that I took it all for granted, failing to ask why I had been so gifted, or really understanding that everything was indeed a gift of grace, and not anything I had earned. Diligence has not been my strong suite! Over the years I have had to have various failures to teach me that no, I can’t do it all on my own. For many years I have known in theory that I can’t do any of it on my own, but going from theory to gut-level understanding has taken more time. I still find that many things come easily to me that other people struggle with, but I have my struggles too, and now I am much quicker to turn to God, even when it’s something that doesn’t seem hard to me. I tell people often that apart from the grace of God, none of us can even draw a single breath. That is very true, and He continues to remind me of it day by day.

Father, thank You for this reminder just now. Thank You for all You enabled me to do yesterday, and for all that is on the schedule for today. Some of the demands are physical, and some are mental. I can’t meet any of them apart from You! I ask You to give me the energy, the understanding, and the dexterity to do each thing on Your schedule, for Your praise and glory. Thank You. Praise God!

About jgarrott

Born and raised in Japan of missionary parents. Have been here as an adult missionary since 1981.
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