The public sphere of the world we live in is crazy, isn't it? Everyone has an opinion and is not afraid to share it. Through the internet, we can reach so many more people than we could previously. And, we don't have to look them in the eye when we say all sorts of controversial things. We can just throw it out there on social media. It is so hard to sort out what is real from what is false. So much of it is not just an opinion, it is an attack. It all seems to be immersed in name calling and hatefulness. It can be hard to stand on what is loving and spiritually wise. The response to our stand for God has become increasingly unpredictable.
Psalm 119:17-24 (CSB)17 Deal generously with your servant
so that I might live;
then I will keep your word.
18 Open my eyes so that I may contemplate
wondrous things from your instruction.
19 I am a resident alien on earth;
do not hide your commands from me.
20 I am continually overcome
with longing for your judgments.
21 You rebuke the arrogant,
the ones under a curse,
who wander from your commands.
22 Take insult and contempt away from me,
for I have kept your decrees.
23 Though princes sit together speaking against me,
your servant will think about your statutes;
24 your decrees are my delight
and my counselors.
Do you ever feel like a "resident alien" or stranger (NASB)? I do. I would like to think that it is because I am walking closely with Jesus, but probably not. We do have a sense that we are destined for somewhere else. There is so much of our worldview that is at odds with current culture. We should not be upset by this. It is supposed to be this way. We, however, still live. We do not run to a cave and hide out because we are afraid of the opposition and unpopularity. We live to an audience of one…of the ONE. There are plenty who are sitting and speaking against all that we worship and believe in. We, however, are not alone. We have each other and we have God. I would encourage you to keep walking the path He has you on.
What is it that we can stand on? Where can we get help?
"Your decrees are my delight and my counselors"
Do you really feel this way? Do you believe this in a way that is solid and real? We know that counsel is in God's Word, but it can be really hard to find and understand. We know we should delight, but many times we are just lost in His Word, or we cannot seem to translate it to our lives.
I would encourage you to, first of all, ask God to give you time and understanding. He will give you delight. He will give you counsel. This, however, does not come without some engagement. Find a habit of reading and studying your Bible in a way that is interesting, productive, and God-seeking. Find some friends. Find or start a Bible study. Try out some different devotional formats. Try some things out until you find something that is useful. Don't forget that ultimately, we are seeking God and His ways. Be sure to invite the Holy Spirit to be your teacher. He is our counselor after all.
Will you pray this stanza of Psalm 119 as a prayer today?