Last Sunday morning, Terry and I sat on the balcony outside our room at the Carlisle Inn near Sugarcreek, Ohio. The sun was bright. The skies were blue with some white overhead clouds. The temperature was very pleasant. We had a clear view of the surrounding pastoral setting. We had taken a brief respite for the weekend in “Amish country.” We were blessed by the rest of our outing.
But, there was a more qualifying point to consider as it involved our getaway. Giving deliberate time for worship, I opened my Bible and read Psalms 145. The Psalmist was very impressed with how good God had been to him. He wrote, “Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised …The Lord is gracious …The Lord is good to all … You open your hand and satisfy the desire of every living creature.”
During our hour of worship, we considered the particular points of the psalm. We reflected thankfully about how God has been so good to our family. The Psalmist pointed out, “They shall abundantly utter the memory of your great goodness.” We agreed that, in the past when things were not so good financially and materially, we had the memory God was so good to us that we did not know a difference. The recognized goodness of God caused us to feel very well blessed.
We agreed that, when Micaiah and Jamin became so grievously ill, we had the memory God was so good to us that we were strengthened and encouraged that each would overcome. We agreed that, when God called one of our sons home to be with Him, we had the memory God was so good to us that we were uplifted and comforted. The presence of God was a deep, rich blessing to us.
We talked about how good God is to us at the present, and that we expect God to continue in the days to come to be good because He gives us every reason that we may expect good blessings from Him. The Psalmist had the same expectation, as he said, “The eyes of all wait upon you. You give them their meat in due season.”
During those moments of worship of God, we gave the matters of our life a rest from our stresses and strains, from our rigors and responsibilities, and from our need-to-do’s and want-to-do’s. During those moments, we focused on God. Those moments of worship gave us good opportunity to reflect and regard just how good God is. The overall effect was simultaneously a blessing and a refreshing.
It prevails upon us to practice more regularly giving it a rest as it concerns our lives that we may instead focus on God. We should more regularly give it a rest from the complaints about what we perceive to be wrong in our lives, and rather focus on the goodness that God directs toward us. Consider the perspective of the Psalmist, “The Lord is nigh unto all them that call upon Him, to all that call upon Him in truth.” Calling upon God is far better than complaining, do you not think?
It prevails upon us to give it a rest from the selfish whining concerning what we perceive we lack, and rather focus on the providence God directs our way. Remember with the Psalmist, that “God is good to all.”
We should specifically give matters a rest and focus on God when we go to church. All too often we carry our complaints and whining to church, failing to truly worship God in spirit and in truth. We should be ashamed! Instead follow the lead of the Psalmist, who declared worshipfully, “I will extol you, my God, O King, and I will bless your name.” God is worthy of focused worship.
“One generation shall praise your works to another,” the Psalmist stipulated. We cannot effectively communicate God to the next generation the goodness of God if we do not give other matters a rest.