It Leads Only to Evil

Talk about a wake up call. I was reading Psalm 37 and although I have read this Psalm a hundred times, I saw a line I had never seen. But first a little background. I was stressed out, striving and sick about it. I needed help and wanted answers, NOW!  Guess what? God doesn’t always have “NOW” on His clock, so I was really upset. I went to the scripture for comfort, for perspective. And sure enough Psalm 37 delivered both.

 “Trust in the Lord and do good;
dwell in the land and enjoy safe pasture.
Delight yourself in the Lord
and he will give you the desires of your heart.
Commit your way to the Lord;
trust in him and he will do this:
He will make your righteousness
shine like the dawn
the justice of your cause like
the noonday  sun.

So rich is the word of God. Trust, delight, commit, shine. He will do this. The next passage is about being still and waiting patiently for Him. Yes, it was a comfort. It was a God perspective that I needed.

But then came the cold water splashing in my face. “Do not fret — it leads only to evil.”

Just look at those words. Say them out loud. Do not fret. It LEADS only to evil. It leads ONLY to evil. It leads only to EVIL.  I have never considered it before, but it’s true. Fretting leads to gossip, manipulation, deception, stealing, striving, quitting, settling, doubting, coping, addiction, etc.

This is not what God wants for us. Honestly it is not what we want for us but it is what our minds lead us to if we are not centered on trusting God. He promises us rest and hope, “For the Lord upholds him with His hand.”

Focus on the face of God and not on the circumstances. Allow yourself to feel His hands holding you instead of wringing your own.  Be mindful of your mind. Ask the Lord to keep you.

He is Able, But Is He Willing?

Ever have those days that you don’t dare say, “What else can go wrong?” because you are so afraid that it WILL?

Yes? Welcome to my world.

When it gets frantic,  I notice that I want to “do” a lot of things to make myself feel better. Clean. Get angry. Fix it. Yell at it. Run away. And my personal favorite, blame, blame, blame.

So I go to my bathroom to vent, and I find I am mostly mad at God. What on earth has He done, you ask?  Well that is why I am mad. To me, it looks like He is not doing anything, because my circumstances are getting worse, not better. And you know as well as I do that He has the power to help me. So when He does not, or at least does not on my time table, I accuse Him of not caring about me.

Then I hear my friend Kristen talking about “striving with my Maker.”  When I am fighting God, I am fighting for control, or afraid that He will kill me with His driving. So I reach over and grab the wheel.   Not smart. I hear the words of a song, “when fears are stilled and strivings cease…”

And His Spirit reminds me of the verse from the weekend that He made come alive.  “For the pagans run after all these things, and your heavenly Father knows that you need them. ” Matthew 6:32

Why do I flip out about bills, and trip expenses, and groceries, and all the other things?  Why do I run after them as if I am all alone and it is all on me to make this happen?

My Heavenly Father knows I need them.  He doesn’t just know. He knows I need.  And He really does care.

I don’t have to run after those things, I just have to run to Him, with faith, believing He knows and He is willing.