Monday, July 12, 2010

Fighting for joy

        "My soul clings to the dust;
give me life according to your word!
  When I told of my ways, you answered me;
teach me your statutes!
  Make me understand the way of your precepts,
and I will meditate on your wondrous works.
  My soul melts away for sorrow;
strengthen me according to your word!
  Put false ways far from me
and graciously teach me your law!
  I have chosen the way of faithfulness;
I set your rules before me.
  I cling to your testimonies, O LORD;
let me not be put to shame!
  I will run in the way of your commandments
when you enlarge my heart!"
                                        (Psalm 119:25-32 ESV)

I'm having a hard time expressing how much I can relate to this passage.  From verse 25, "my soul clings to the dust", I find that so true.  Why does my very being cling so tightly to darkness and despair?  When so much hope is set before me, why do I often retreat?  Then the psalmist cries out and God answers.  He knows that only God can lift his head, because his heart is so bent towards the darkness.  He prays, he examines and asks the Lord to examine his heart, he meditates on God's wondrous works.  Yet sorrow still overcomes his soul.  So he prays and waits more.  He never loses hope on the One who has the power to revive him.  I love the last line, because it's such a great hope of deliverance from our darkest times.  "I will RUN" replaces "I cling to the dust".  He anticipates with excitement the day when his strength will be greater than ever for him to follow and serve God and he knows that it will be because God has "enlarged his heart".

Oh how I want this too.  I get so lost in the pain of so many things that I to cling to the dust.  I cry out and I chose His ways.  I battle to rejoice.  However, seemingly the sorrow still gets the best of me and I retreat again to the darkness.  BUT I know God remains faithful.  He will cleanse me of all of the things that keep me from running to Him, and He will enlarge my heart.  I will run with great joy in the paths He sets before me.

To help me in the battle for joy in God, I am reading a couple of great books.  Both are by John Piper.  


John8com said...

Hi Lisa,

I know what you're going through. For many years I struggled through the long night of spiritual depression and despair. But I was forgetting the other side of this truth:

"For his anger lasts only a moment, but his favor lasts a lifetime; weeping may remain for a night, but rejoicing comes in the morning." - Psalms 30:6

God bless you as you continue to pursue him and as he lifts up your soul to the joy found only in Jesus. Dare to believe in the promises of Jesus, and to shut your ears to the darkness.


My Life as a Mom said...

Love the blog changes! Thanks for that verse. I so need it! Been up all night with the kids and tiredness always brings out my despair. Thanks!

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