[Papercut Press] 2002-05-20 - God's Protective Mercy

Psalm 91:4 He will cover you with His pinions, and under His wings you may seek refuge; His faithfulness is a shield and bulwark.

I am thankful today for God's sustaining protective mercy. There are probably so many ways that His providential care protects us daily, hourly, as we live our lives. There are, from time to time, events in our lives where we experience God's protection and care in very specific ways. I was able to see His grace in full force last Thursday as I missed a turn, hit a tree and totaled my SUV. God was very gracious as I walked away and did not require any medical attention.

God makes this promise to Joshua, "I will not fail you or forsake you" Joshua 1:5. This does not mean that things always go perfectly in our lives, but there is a gracious element to God's love that we should not simply take for granted. Even though I was spared injury in my accident, it is not like every thing went well for me. I still had an accident, am out a car, and have people rightly questioning my judgment and intelligence. I was going too fast and it was simply all my fault. There are consequences, even for the children of the Lord, when we behave foolishly. Romans 8:28, "All things work together for good..." is not a voodoo magic phrase that means everything is always fine. Sometimes God brings unpleasantness into our lives simply to teach us dependence on Him or to further our growth in His grace.

Paul has an interesting perspective for us to consider in 2 Corinthians 12:10. "Therefore I am well content with weaknesses, with insults, with distresses, with persecutions, with difficulties, for Christ's sake; for when I am weak, then I am strong." We can't say this verse applies to my accident. I did not take out the tree for Christ's sake and the difficulties I am enduring are, again, not for the sake of Christ. But when we experience difficulties or insults because we follow Christ we can honestly say with Paul that we humbly endure such things because when we are weak, we are strong. This is because it is to Christ we turn for strength in our weakness.

One of the sections of Scripture where I turn when I need comfort is Psalm 135:6,7. It starts off, "Whatever the Lord pleases, He does." I take from this that there is no situation, or circumstance that goes on in my life that is not somehow related to the sovereignty of God. Even if it is a bad event in my life, it still falls under God's care and sovereignty. After all, He could have prevented that situation or event from happening in my life. And this is why this verse is so comforting to me. God doesn't make mistakes. If He does as He pleases, and everything He does is good, then I can relax when my circumstances are maybe not as I would have them in my conceptually perfect world.

There are lots of ways we could apply this. One thing we should all do is thank God for His tender care for us in the matters of our life. There are mercies we receive from Him that we never even know He is granting us. Another thing, and I have had to learn this the hard way (and am still learning this), is to trust His providence. I'm certainly not happy about my recent events, but who else can I trust but the Lord? Friends and family are prone to fail us, and we even fail us, but the Lord never fails us. "Let us now fall into the hand of the Lord for His mercies are great" 2 Samuel 24:14.

Soli Deo Gloria,

[email tim] godrulestb@aol.com