Diversions

Bishop

Your righteousness is like the strongest mountains;
    your justice is like the deepest sea.
        Lord, you save both humans and animals (Psalm 36:6, Common English Bible).

It seems like all I do since the quarantine started is sit with my computer in my lap getting something ready, a blog post, a sermon (I still haven’t started on), Children’s Faith Corner, Devo Live, email , did I mention I still need to work on my sermon, oh yeah, I guess I did.

I need a diversion. Something that will take my mind off the other things, perhaps give me a chuckle. Meet Bishop. Bishop is a dog pound dog. We think he may have some Italian Greyhound or Whippet in him. With the long legs and barreled chest, he is definitely a dog built for running and run he does. This dog loves to run.

In our condo Bishop will sprint across a diagonal path from the home study across the living room into the dining room to under the dining room table, stop on a dime, reverse course and do it again. This can go on for several minutes. It works for him because all those rooms are carpeted.

On occasion I will get him to run across the kitchen floor. It is tile and you can hear his nails run across the floor trying to gain some kind of traction that just isn’t there.

At my mom’s house, there is no carpet at all. But when Bishop woke up this morning, he was full of energy and started to run. With the floor plan of the house Bishop can run a lap from the living room into the formal dining room, then to the kitchen followed by the breakfast nook, and back into the living room. While there is no carpet in the house there is a large area rug in the living room. Traction was in short supply but he tried his best to run. The result was pretty funny.

Bishop is not a dog who will give you kisses. I have never had a dog before that didn’t want to lick people. Bishop never has. But that doesn’t mean he isn’t affectionate. He is. He likes to cuddle and get his face close to yours and then rub his head into your neck.

He also likes to sleep on the foot of my recliner. He will jump up on the chair, push his way between my legs, curl up and go to sleep. When he wakes up he is ready to run again.

Bishop Dude (as we call him) is truly a blessing from God. He has provided a lot of joy and comfort. When I was sick back at Christmas, Bishop was with me almost all the time. He stayed in my chair with me. He was doing his best to take care of me. He really didn’t “help” at all but he sure brought some joy.

I needed a diversion this morning. Bishop provided me that. And, God provided me with Bishop. I am so thankful for my little dog and the joy and distractions he provides to Cindy and me.

Christian comedian and singer, Mark Lowry came out on stage wearing a T-shirt saying, “Dogs Go to Heaven – Psalm 36:6.” Ever since I was a kid I have hoped that to be the case. While it may be taken out of context, Lowry uses Psalm 36:6 to give those of us with pets hope we will see them again.

Mark Lowry at the Dove Awards

While I was trying to find exactly what Mark’s t-shirt said, I ran across an article that was talking about quarantined pets and the way the help us.

“…pets are providing comfort and relief to desperate people. For ages, cats, dogs, and the occasional rabbit have been beloved companions. But in an unprecedented moment like this one, they’ve become, essentially, emotional first responders.” Does that mean I have to pay Bishop? How much is my co-pay?

I guess I need to bring this to a close as Bishop is standing by my chair waiting to jump into my lap. It won’t be long before he is up here, paws in the middle of the keyboard. Then work will be impossible.

Have a blessed day.

Seeking the genuine,
Keith

copyright 2020, J Keith Broyles, All Rights Reserved
Permission given for non-commercial use of this post

Oh, and just so you know, before anyone asks if the Bishop knows I named my dog after him, the answer is no. It is no because Bishop is not named after the Bishop. He had the name when we got him from the pound. I thought it the perfect name for a Methodist preacher’s dog so I left it just as the pound had named him.

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Source: https://www.msn.com/en-us/lifestyle/pets-animals/people-are-adopting-pandemic-pets-during-coronavirus-and-its-restoring-our-faith-in-humanity/ar-BB11B2Rw?ocid=spartanntp
Southern Gospel News Magazine

Tyler and Bug-Bug

31 When Judas was gone, Jesus said, “Now the Human One has been glorified, and God has been glorified in him. 32 If God has been glorified in him, God will also glorify the Human One in himself and will glorify him immediately. 33 Little children, I’m with you for a little while longer. You will look for me—but, just as I told the Jewish leaders, I also tell you now—‘Where I’m going, you can’t come.’

34 “I give you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, so you also must love each other. 35 This is how everyone will know that you are my disciples, when you love each other.” (John 13:31-35, Common English Bible)

A few nights ago I watching something, the news or something. Exactly what watched I can’t recall. Maybe I was on the internet or something. However it happened, I encountered a news story that grabbed my attention. Last night I went back out on the internet trying to find the story. It wasn’t hard but I still don’t know where I saw it. It was one of those feel good stories. As surprising as feel-good stories might be, this was one in my experience really stood out.Tyler is a three year old boy who lives in Clinton Mississippi. Like many young children, Tyler loves cars and trucks. Tyler isn’t just interested in his toy cars and trucks, Tyler loves the real deal. Most kids probably do. Unlike other kids though, the truck Tyler loves the most is the garbage truck. That for me is the surprising part of the story. I don’t know how developed the sense of smell is for three-year-olds but I do know how bad a garbage truck smells .

Back at Thanksgiving and Christmas Tyler (and his grandmother) made goodies for the garbage truck crew. When Tyler’s birthday came around, the crew had a stuffed animal for a birthday gift.

It is not a relationship without risk. On garbage day Tyler wants to rush out to meet the truck even though if he was late, the truck would wait (they have neve waited for me but then again, I’m not a cute three-year-old that made them goodies at Thanksgiving and Christmas.

Other days, Tyler impatiently waited with cookies on the curb. He ran to meet them all but at first, he ignored most of the crew to grabbed onto his best friend’s leg. This was Tyler’s “Bug-Bug.” I don’t know what Bug-But’s name is but he works for Waste Management.776

It doesn’t take a lot of looking to find that Tyler and Bug-Bug have a special relationship. As you can see from the picture above, Tyler is an Anglo young man and Bug-Bug is African=American. Tyler’s mom says, Tyler never notices the color of his friend’s skin, he just sees his special buddy. She also said, Bug-Bug doesn’t notice that Tyler is white. They share a special bond.

This post is about loving one another. It isn’t a post about race though this is a great example of how we should treat each other. This began not as a story about the friendship between an Anglo-American, boy and an African American man. It started with that boy’s fascination with a garbage truck.

That being said, had that man not taken the time to show an interest in that boy, there would have been no friendship and absolutely no story.

“I give you a new commandment: Love each other. Just as I have loved you, so you also must love each other. 35 This is how everyone will know that you are my disciples, when you love each other.” I can’t help but think, Tyler and Bug-Bug have accomplished that love one another part already. In fact, think they have it down pat.

Have a blessed day in the Lord.

In Search of the Genuine,
Keith

copyright 2020, J. Keith Broyles, All Rights Reserved
Permission given for the non-commercial use of this material.

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Source: https://youtu.be/vvqZ4pKyRn8

We Do What We Can

The picture above is a picture of the ship I served in the Navy, the USS Mt. Whitney. It is an amphibious command ship, now having the home port in Italy. I knew she had been in the shipyards over there. The Navy plans on using this ship for another 20 years. That is interesting because, at least according to an article I read sometime back, the Mt. Whitney is the third oldest ship in the fleet now. The Mt. Whitney‘s sister ship, the USS Blue Ridge is number 2. And the oldest is this really old ship, dating back to wooden hulls, the USS Constitution.

When I was in the Navy, Mt. Whitney‘s home port was Norfolk, VA. The Blue Ridge‘s home port was San Diego, and the Constitution (really only used for show and ceremonial purposes today) has her home port in Boston. That was almost 40 years ago. Today Mt. Whitney‘s home port is in Italy. The Blue Ridge is in Japan. Constitution is still in Boston.

Today in the waters off the Italian port city of Gaeta, the Mt. Whitney played the Italian national anthem. It may sound funny, an American Navy ship playing a foreign country’s national anthem. It isn’t the first time, I feel pretty certain it won’t be the last.

It wasn’t even the first time for Mt. Whitney. On my first cruise to Europe in 1978 we entered the port of Dublin. I was part of the ship’s honor guard for that cruise. We went to a national cemetery in Dublin where Vice Admiral W.L. McDonald laid a wreath at the Irish equivalent of “The Tomb of the Unknown Soldier.” It was a moving ceremony and the band played the Irish National Anthem. No, we were not on the ship but it was a ship’s function. 40 years ago, it was for ceremony.

Today it was the Mt. Whitney showing solidarity with the Italian people through this Cobid19 world crisis. While the ship’s crew and a large compliment of private mariners who work on Mt. Whitney, the people around them are their friends and neighbors. It was their way of saying we are with you, this is about all of us.

A few months back, one of my old shipmates posted a Facebook meme with our old ship on it. The meme said, “When I was 20, this was my happy place.” I said then, I won’t say it was my happy place, but I sure had some happy times there.

Mt. Whitney had several loving if not complementary nicknames. She was called the “Funny Twenty,” “Building 20 (We didn’t leave Norfolk very often,” “Fat Albert.” That is just a few.

With what the captain and crew of Mt. Whitney did yesterday I am certainly proud of my old ship. Playing the Italian national anthem may seem small thing, but sometimes even small things can make a big difference.

Yesterday morning, early, Cindy and I went to Walmart to buy supplies for two friends in need who live in a local retirement home. They are under quarantine and can’t get to the story.

He is a Navy guy to but I met in ministry not in the Navy. If he was on and read this I would insert just for him, “we are both Navy guys, only he was on a ship with wooden hulls and decks.

The truth is, I have no idea if Blue Ridge after returning played the Japanese National Anthem or not. I am thinking likely not.

The Mt. Whitney could have come home and done nothing. That is nothing uncommon. We could have ignored our friends needs

What can you do? The list is endless, shopping, cooking, talking on the phone and even if you can do nothing else, you can ALWAYS pray.

Find something you can do and start telling the world you are there to help.

Let’s all do what we can’t. Be smart, but get out and help. When Cindy and I got the the retirement center, Cindy called our friend who came to the front door she could have stayed shuttered inside.

Please, be careful out there, do what you can for someone else, and I know you will be blessed.

Seeking the Genuine,
Keith

Copyright 2020, J. Keith Broyles, All Rights Reserved

If your church could use some prayer, leave us the book

And if your church needs prayer during these difficult times, please leave your church name in the comments and I will create a list. You can come to a post on Facebook and find a church for which you want to pray.

Seeking the Genuine,
Keith

Copyright 2020, J Keith Broyles, All Rights Reserved
Permission Given for non-commercial use of this material

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Source http://www.military.com

A Complicated Guy (Psalm 17)

Psalm 17

A prayer of David.

17 Listen to what’s right, Lord;
    pay attention to my cry!
Listen closely to my prayer;
    it’s spoken by lips that don’t lie!
My justice comes from you;
    let your eyes see what is right!
You have examined my heart,
    testing me at night.
You’ve looked me over closely,
    but haven’t found anything wrong.
    My mouth doesn’t sin.
But these other people’s deeds?
    I have avoided such violent ways
    by the command from your lips.
My steps are set firmly on your paths;
    my feet haven’t slipped.

I cry out to you because you answer me.
    So tilt your ears toward me now—
    listen to what I’m saying!
Manifest your faithful love in amazing ways
    because you are the one
    who saves those who take refuge in you,
    saving them from their attackers
    by your strong hand.
Watch me with the very pupil of your eye!
    Hide me in the protection of your wings,
        away from the wicked
            who are out to get me,
        away from my deadly enemies
            who are all around me!
10 They have no pity;
    their mouths speak arrogantly.
11 They track me down—
    suddenly, they surround me!
    They make their plans to put me in the dirt.
12 They are like a lion eager to rip its prey;
    they are like a strong young lion lying in wait.

13 Get up, Lord!
    Confront them!
    Bring them down!
Rescue my life from the wicked—
    use your sword!
14 Rescue me from these people—
    use your own hands, Lord!
Rescue me from these people
    whose only possession is their fleeting life.
But fill the stomachs of your cherished ones;
    let their children be filled full
    so that they have leftovers enough for their babies.

15 But me? I will see your face in righteousness;
    when I awake, I will be filled full by seeing your image (Psalm 17:1-15, Common English Bible)

Yesterday I said during my sermon that I liked the Naaman story because I can imagine it playing out in my mind. I can see Naaman getting to Elisha’s house and becoming angry because Elisha refused to come out. I can see him becoming frustrated as he bathed in the Jordan the first six times and nothing seemed to change. I can see the excitement he would have when he comes up the seventh time (as I tell it, the body clean of leprosy was the discovery of his men). I can see that whole story unfold.

Stories about David are different. First, I can’t imagine being king of anything. That might be the result of growing up in a country that is not a monarchy but the truth of the matter is, I have no desire to be President either. All it takes for me is to see a picture of a president, ANY president and compare pictures of when they went into office and when they left office and I am convinced it is not the job I would want.

I once did have political aspirations. When I did, my highest interest was to be a senator. If I lost my mind and decided to do that now, please have me committed.

When I read Psalm 17, I see a pretty complicated guy in the psalmist. According the the credit at the top of the psalm, we are told the psalmist is King David. For our purposes today we will assume that is the case.

He definitely knows he is the guy in charge. Read the way he talks to God in this prayer. “Listen to what’s right Lord. Pay attention to my cry.”

We don’t know if, when Psalm 17 was written if David was king or not. We can quickly see language that would make us see him as a king.

Though I don’t really have much to base it on, I think David wrote this psalm after his encounter with Goliath and probably during the time before David ascended to the throne and Saul was out to kill him. I am not sure how I have come to that conclusion but that is what I think. I do know I arrived at the conclusion that Saul is still king because that would have been a time when enemies were after him. But, then again, it could have happened when his son Absalom was attempting to take David’s throne for himself.

As I read this psalm, this idea of a complicated man came pretty early on in the reading. David says he has avoided violent ways (v. 4). I almost wanted to laugh, particularly as I continued to read. David, the guy who planted a stone in the forehead of an opponent. David, the guy who would send a man to his death on the front lines of battle. David, the guy that made his king who the crowds would sing chants about him killing his thousands. David who might not show violence here himself, but he sure wants God to commit violence on his behalf, “Use your sword!” (v. 13).

I too like to think of myself as a non-violent guy. I do have a temper. There is no doubt of that, but my temper has not turned violent. Still, if I am honest, under the right set of circumstances, I feel pretty certain violence could be the result. And that friends, is where it could get complicated for any of us.

Have a blessed day in the Lord.

Seeking the Genuine,
Keith

copyright 2020, J. Keith Broyles, All Rights Reserved
Permission is given for the non-commercial use of this post.

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And Yet

OK, I put the sermon I had planned to preach tomorrow away for now and wrote something new, more connected to our current situation. I may get back to the Lenten sermon series sometime but I thought I needed to deal with the current issue.

I wrote my blog yesterday afternoon about the current situation. I wrote a new song this morning that is about prayer but it is rooted in the Covid-19. I have made a couple of other related posts today. Just about every conversation I have had has been about the virus.

Frankly, it has barely begun and I am tired of talking about it. I know it isn’t going away soon and I will talk more tomorrow in church and I feel certain on here. But right now, I can talk about something else and for my own mental health I am going to do that.

Just about any time I open my web browser and it isn’t to a specific preset site, I get a list of current articles posted on various sites around the internet. Some days there isn’t much I want to read, others there are one or two and some days there seems to be a lot of low hanging fruit. Yesterday was a middle day. There was only one article that peeked my interest. The headline said, “What Would Happen if Earth Started to Spin Faster?” The opening sentence said, “Even a 1 mph speed boost would make things pretty weird.” I would have liked for them to tell me what was going to get weird and they really didn’t.

The did say that the speed the earth spins constantly varies slightly. If earth started increasing speed, it would be more difficult for us to maintain our spot on the planet because it would constantly try to throw us off. The article said that the oceans would rise at the equator and become more shallow at the poles. They listed other things that would change. If you want to know more, go read the link for yourself (article). That isn’t where I want to make my point.

In my mind I have been thinking about evidence of the existence of God. At least to me, this is clear evidence. How can this all be by accident when as little as a one mile an hour increase (though they did not say it, to me logic would indicate different issues but issues all the same from a one mile per hour decrease) in spin rate. Here is a narrow spin rate window to allow life on this planet to exist as we know it. If you increased the spin wind speeds would increase, there would be changes in gravity, you would lose weight (if you are like me you would enjoy that part) and you would live in a constant state of jet lag. I don’t see how someone could say this tiny sweet spot just appeared.

In the old television show Star Trek: The Next Generation (No, I am not a Trekkie but Cindy really likes it so I watch it sometimes with her) there is a scene where Captain Piccard and this semi-god figure Q are back in time on prehistoric earth. They are looking in this pool some kind of protien or something, and these two ameba kind of things are swimming toward each other and miss each other. Q then says to Piccard words to the effect of, “and life on earth never happened.

I am not trying to say such a story line is how life did come to earth. What I am saying is, in all the vastness of the universe, for everything required for life to come together, I cannot see it happening as an accident.

Christmas Eve, I was suddenly hit with some kind of bug that had me shaking so hard I thought I was having a seizure. It was chills from a fever that ran two degrees above normal. Our bodies are so fine tuned that to be just a bit out of temperature zone can lead us to feel positively awful. It knocked me down so hard, for the first time in my 29 year career, I missed Christmas Eve worship.

Just a slight change in something can lead to dramatic problems. God tuned us to reach maximum efficiency.

We live on, to quote another old television show, The “Third Rock from the Sun.” If we lived on the second rock from the sun it would be too hot to survive. If we lived on the fourth rock (Mars), it would be too cold. It took the perfect placement.

I cannot buy that all this happened by accident. Everything had to be too exact.It took the right spin rate on earth. It had to be earth because the next closest alternatives were too hot or too cold. And then there is the temperature sweet spot. Ockham’s Razor is a principle from philosophy. Suppose there exist two explanations for an occurrence. The one requiring the smallest number of assumptions is usually correct. Another way of saying it is that the more assumptions you have to make, the more unlikely an explanation.

One explanation, God exists and drives creation is one assumption. Trying to think of all the possibilities for it to happen and God not exist? Well, that just makes my head hurt.

Have a great evening.

Seeking the Genuine,
Keith

Copyright 2020, J. Keith Broyles, All rights reserved. Permission to use for non-commercial purposes is granted.

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These Bibles Are Not the Same (Psalm 16)

Psalm 16

Song of Trust and Security in God

A Miktam of David.

Protect me, O God, for in you I take refuge.
I say to the Lord, “You are my Lord;
    I have no good apart from you.”

As for the holy ones in the land, they are the noble,
    in whom is all my delight.

Those who choose another god multiply their sorrows;
    their drink offerings of blood I will not pour out
    or take their names upon my lips.

The Lord is my chosen portion and my cup;
    you hold my lot.
The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places;
    I have a goodly heritage.

I bless the Lord who gives me counsel;
    in the night also my heart instructs me.
I keep the Lord always before me;
    because he is at my right hand, I shall not be moved.

Therefore my heart is glad, and my soul rejoices;
    my body also rests secure.
10 For you do not give me up to Sheol,
    or let your faithful one see the Pit.

11 You show me the path of life.
    In your presence there is fullness of joy;
    in your right hand are pleasures forevermore. (Psalm 16:1-11, New Revised Standard Version)

Early in my ministry days, before the internet was everywhere, in fact, my first four years in the ministry about all I did on my computer was type things and play the occasional game. I did use an early database management program for keeping the church membership and I was able to generate some of the information I needed for reporting.

While it did make my life easier, I didn’t need it all that much. At that time I still handwrote all my sermons. To type them on the computer I had to be at home. I didn’t have a computer at the church.

When I did something and wanted to look at several at the same time, side-by-side. I had (I still have them, I just don’t use them much), two parallel Bibles which have me eight versions of the Bible in two books. Then, I would add up to six additional versions when I wanted to do serious comparisons.

Later I had a computer program that had several versions of the Bible. Later still, I was able to get on a brand new website, biblegateway.com. With 53 different English translations, I have more than I could ever really use.

When I started working on today’s psalm post, I read it and I was pretty sure I did Psalm 16 yesterday too. My first day with a new psalm I generally use The Common English Bible. So far I have written on each psalm at least two days. On the second day (today is a second day) I use New Revised Standard Version. The third day, if there is one, I use New International Version. I know there is psalm coming, probably in the fall I feel pretty sure I will work with for at least four days. Those days I am planning to use The Good News Bible.

Anyway, while reading today from from NRSV I thought, this doesn’t seem right. I went into WordPress and looked. At first I didn’t even realize the problem. I went and looked back at Psalms 15 and 17. They didn’t even come close. So, I used Bible Gateway and looked at all but one side by side. I looked and then looked at another outside what I could see on the screen. New Revised Standard, was different from Common English. I took a look at NIV. It was right with NRSV. The same for the Good News translation. I tried the Holman Standard. I thought it was published about the same time as CEB so the committee translating it worked well together. Holman Standard was with the other. The last one was King James. It looked the same as every other version except Common English.

When something happens like the differences in the translations, I first try to hear which one seems to make the most sound. If that doesn’t solve the issue I used to go to an interlinear Bible. I thought that might be the most accurate until I thought one day, that might be a literal translation but I have two and there were three places where the translations were quite different. Since I don’t read Hebrew or Greek, I really have no idea what translation does a better job.

In all the versions I looked at, verse three is different in CEB but close to the same across the board.’

Now as for the “holy ones” in the land,  the “magnificent ones” that I was so happy about;  let their suffering increase because   they hurried after a different god. I won’t participate in their blood offerings;  I won’t let their names cross my lips. Common English Bible

As for the holy ones in the land, they are the noble,  in whom is all my delight. Those who choose another god multiply their sorrows; their drink offerings of blood I will not pour out or take their names upon my lips. New Revised Standard Version

I say of the holy people who are in the land, “They are the noble ones in whom is all my delight.” Those who run after other gods will suffer more and more. I will not pour out libations of blood to such gods or take up their names on my lips. New International Version

How excellent are the Lord's faithful people! My greatest pleasure is to be with them. Those who rush to other gods bring many troubles on themselves. I will not take part in their sacrifices; I will not worship their gods. Good News Translation

In the CEB, the psalmist is asking God to go put a whipping on those that wandered from the faith. He has nothing nice to say. He is angry because they ran off and now wants God to take care of it

The NRSV, NIV, GNT, all say essentially the same thing. It is praise for those that stayed with their unit. As for those who “went over the hill? (Navy slang for AWOL). They are on their own.

One more thing before I shut this post down. I am trying to give you definitions, or at least those I can find. At the top of the psalm is the word Miktam. Those that address the term at all, are pretty much in agreement. They all say that it is an inscription. The first difference is, GNT says nothing. CEB just says inscription. NRSV says Hebrew meaning is uncertain. And, NIV agrees with inscription but they believe it has something to do with music.

Should you need to look at multiple translations at the same time, go check out biblegateway.com. It is a great resource for Bible study.

Have a great day in the Lord.

In search of the genuine,
Keith

copyright 2020, J. Keith Broyles, All Rights Reserved

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Celebrate Joy (Psalm 16)

Psalm 16

A miktam of David.

16 Protect me, God, because I take refuge in you.
I say to the Lord, “You are my Lord.
    Apart from you, I have nothing good.”
Now as for the “holy ones” in the land,
    the “magnificent ones” that I was so happy about;
    let their suffering increase because
        they hurried after a different god.
I won’t participate in their blood offerings;
    I won’t let their names cross my lips.
You, Lord, are my portion, my cup;
    you control my destiny.
The property lines have fallen beautifully for me;
    yes, I have a lovely home.

I will bless the Lord who advises me;
    even at night I am instructed
    in the depths of my mind.
I always put the Lord in front of me;
    I will not stumble because he is on my right side.
That’s why my heart celebrates and my mood is joyous;
    yes, my whole body will rest in safety
10     because you won’t abandon my life to the grave;
    you won’t let your faithful follower see the pit.

11 You teach me the way of life.
    In your presence is total celebration.
Beautiful things are always in your right hand. (Psalm 16, Common English Bible)

I love this psalm. I love the images of celebration. I love the psalmist’s joyous mood. It is a psalm that points to God’s protection and provision.

But then, there those two verses that are just not very joyous. There is nothing there to celebrate. I feel pretty empty when I read them set among all these other verses. Nine verses of joy and two verses that don’t seem to fit. Let’s read them again. “Now as for the “holy ones” in the land, the “magnificent ones” that I was so happy about; let their suffering increase because they hurried after a different god. I won’t participate in their blood offerings; I won’t let their names cross my lips (vv. 3-4).

It is obvious when I read verses three and four that David cared about these he calls “holy ones” and “magnificent ones.” I do get it, they messed up. They messed up and consequences will follow. They turned their backs on God and arguably God’s wrath might be on their horizon. But then again, God is also known for giving out abundant grace.

I have had people disappoint me both within the faith family and beyond. It has upset me. In some cases it has shaken me. In other cases I have gotten angry. Most of us have known of times like these. But do we ask God to increase their suffering? Perhaps we do during our time of greatest anger, but cooler heads usually prevail in the end.

I would like to think that when in a similar situation and a brother or sister experienced a faith crisis and started to question God, or even ran from God, that I would pray, but instead of praying for God’s wrath, I would pray that God gave me the right words that they might see their way back into God’s presence.

It seems to me, if that wavering brother or sister managed to find their way home to God, because of God’s work in me or in spite of me, joy would abound and we would have great reason to celebrate. We would be celebrating joy.

Have a blessed day in the Lord.

Seeking the Genuine,
Keith

Copyright 2020, J. Keith Broyles, All Rights Reserved
Permission given for the non-commercial use of this post

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