Psalm 73- 17 September 2020
As one reads and meditates on Psalm 73, one can straight away relate to what the author, Asaph, is feeling. It is a thought that has crossed our minds at one point or another in our walk with God. We know that our God is a good and faithful God. He is our Jehovah-Jireh, the God who provides. But yet, when we look at our life as Christians compared to non-believers, we sometimes doubt that we are blessed as Christians. When we look around us, life seems easy for non believers (v.4-5). We can often find ourselves frustrated when people who do not have a relationship with God are doing better than you. Can we take a moment to reflect if these thoughts have crossed our minds? Is it worth it to obey God and walk with God? One can look around at other’s lavish lifestyles and ponder whether or not they are getting a raw deal with God.
Asaph finds it discouraging and you can experience his emotions- “All day long I have been afflicted, and every morning brings new punishments” (v.14). So what was causing Asaph to feel this way? It was envy. Envy is to desire what someone else has that we don’t have; it’s a form of jealousy. Envy is very dangerous as it can start small and before we realise it, it will grow into a full-blown discontentment with our lives and with God. The more we dwell on this “unfairness,” the farther it takes us away from God. If you are feeling this way, you need to quickly draw yourself back to God.
This is what happens when we do not think Christ is enough for us and we must realize that this life is temporary. Despite his frustrations, Asaph finally comes to a realization of the truth in verse 17- until I went into the sanctuary of God; then I understood their end”. We are just passing through this world to move on to our final destination. Despite all the health and wealth the ungodly enjoys, unfortunately, this will come to an end. Stop looking at your left and right, and focus onto God. Our perspective will shift from the temporal to the eternal. Even if we are down to nothing, we still have everything, we have Jesus. Asaph took his eyes off the world and focuses upward to God and he is humbled:
Whom have I heaven but you? And there is nothing on earth I desire besides you. My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever. (v.25 to 26).
When we look to the Cross of Christ, we may still have lingering questions pertaining to why God allows unfairness or injustice to continue in this world. But, as Timothy Keller puts it, “it can’t be that He doesn’t love us. It can’t be that He is indifferent or detached from our condition. God takes our misery and suffering so seriously that He was willing to take it on Himself”.
So, while we wait for all injustice to finally be brought to an end (Revelation 21:4), we find meaning and strength in it through the Cross.
a) Have you found yourself in a similar situation as Asaph?
b) Is there something or someone you are envious of?
Lord, help me find my fullness in you. Help me come to the realization that you are more than enough. Increase my faith, so I will love you more than anything else in life. Help me have an eternal perspective rather than the temporal. I surrender all my discontentment into your hands and to replace it with joy and appreciation of who You are.