“God’s way is perfect.
All the Lord’s promises prove true.
He is a shield for all who look to Him for protection.
For who is God except the Lord?
Who but our God is a solid rock?
God arms me with strength,
and He makes my way perfect.” Psalm 18:30-32
“God’s way is perfect.”
Sounds like a no-brainer for us Christians, doesn’t it? While I grasp this mentally, so often in my emotion, I chase my own way, and it ain’t pretty when I do. For me that can mean condemning & defeating self-talk, an irritable attitude, making poor eating choices, turning the TV on instead of being with the Lord or serving another. Like I said, it ain’t pretty.
God’s way is revealed to us in His Word and by His Spirit in our hearts. So we have to be more than knee deep in study & prayer for us to walk in His way. We need to be immersed in it.
“All the Lord’s promises prove true.”
This is the why behind His perfect way. Not only is God perfect and His way perfect; but He also has kept, is keeping & will keep each and every promise. While I flit about and flirt with my flesh cravings, He remains steadfast and firm, consistent and unchanging.
“He is a shield for all who look to Him for protection.”
Don’t we all want that? To be protected? To feel safe? As a young child, I remember lying in my bed at night, watching the shadows drawn from the moon’s reflection through the trees that danced on my wall through the window. And I laid there in dread of those shadows morphing into the shape of a human that would crack open my door, tiptoeing in to hurt me, to violate me like it had done so many other times. The Lord, my Rock, led me to Himself, to cry out for protection. Though it didn’t always change the situation, He protected my heart in a way that I can’t describe with words. He shielded me. Maybe you’ve experienced something similar.
“For who is God except the Lord?
Who but our God is a solid rock?”
Good questions. Isaiah 44:8 answers: “Is there any God besides me? No, there is no other Rock; I know not one.” The old hymn elaborates: “All other ground is sinking sand.”
“God arms me with strength,
and He makes my way perfect.”
I know a good many Christian who fall into the cheap grace ditch giving constant excuses for their sin. But I know even more who approach the Christian life in works-based morality, or sometimes legalism, who think somehow they can attain perfection by choosing to do good and to stay strong. To be honest, I’ve fallen into both ditches on and off throughout my Christian life.
But when we understand that is is HE who strengthens us, who provides every grace we need to walk in His perfect way, it changes us from being performance-based Christians to God-dependent, process-oriented ones. Instead of waking up to a new day thinking we are going to change the world, we wake up on our knees, knowing our neediness and dependence on the Lord who changes us first, strengthens us and leads us on His way. I love the way Beth Moore puts it: “God didn’t just come to change your life; He came to change your day.” And only the Lord can do that as we lean upon Him, each and every hour of the day, instead of trusting in our own way.
This post is for me today. Truly. I’m struggling with fleshy thoughts and unproductive feelings. I’m physically weary, as well as a impatient with my lack of productivity as I heal. And I hate that sometimes when these temptations come, I don’t face them God’s way. Last night as I went to bed, I simply prayed, “Lord Jesus, help me. I hate my sin and my stinky attitude. Help me turn from it and follow You.” Then He led me to Psalm 18 this morning. Tears and repentance followed.
Maybe “Lord, help me” wasn’t your bedtime plea. But I pray it is your regular plea anyway. Because when we rely on our own strength and morality, we’re gonna face an army of temptations that we may not be able to resist, and we’re gonna hit some walls, falling flat on our faces. As the Lord leads us, we will still face armies and walls in our paths, but the verses right before this passage shows us the difference that depending on His strength makes. And it blows me away:
“In your strength I can crush an army;
with my God I can scale any wall.” (vs. 29)
Our honest and contrite pleas for help will lead us to victory which glories in and glorifies our Lord Jesus Christ. Need we look anywhere else for deliverance from ourselves and/or others? Help us, Lord.
“Do not glory in your own faith, your own feelings,
your own knowledge, or your own diligence.
Glory in nothing but Christ.” ~ J.C. Ryle
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