Ps. 37 Week Three–Be Still in the Land

Welcome back!
Every Wednesday for the next 7 weeks or so, I’d like you to pull up a chair, a pillow or cushion, grab a cup of something hot and join us as we sit around the virtual ‘living room’ talking about God’s Word together.
Each of our weekly ‘walks’ (which is why I chose the pathway photo above) will be reviewing 4 or 5 verses at a time, asking questions, defining words, and shining light on some of the gems I’ve discovered.

I’ll include my email address at the end if you’d like to ask a question or make a comment. I so look forward to hearing from you.
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You know how, when God begins to drill something down into your life and you commit it to speech or print by sharing it with others that God will always make sure you have the opportunity to live it out?

Yeah, well, that’s where I’ve been at. Reminds me of a Beth Moore quote I posted several months ago. (see photo).

REAL LIFE: 
Remember last week when I talked about ‘rolling and reposing’ our cares upon God?

I’ve found that it has been very hard to do–I’ve been carrying worries and weight around about life, writing, work, forgetting my Father is there to carry it for me. As a result I’ve felt my joy is gone, I have no anointing when I pray, discouragement has set in….BUT.

But God. He came through and is continuing to be my strength.  I went to our Home Group last week and shared my burdens. What I wanted prayer for was a significant, long lasting pain in my hips/pelvis area which had resulted in pain radiating down my left leg.  And all this discomfort was affecting my sleep. 

I felt shot and I needed a touch from Jesus.
Through prayer and just right words and the power of God’s healing touch I was released.  Most of the setting free was in my spirit through a lot of tears. I felt my joy return, hope was back, discouragement was gone.  I didn’t even know those were the cares I carried, But God did. The interesting by-product was a release of all that pain in my derriere. (I can say that, right?  ‘Cause that’s where it hurt the most.)

I think the two are related. I mean, who knew you could carry stress around in your, um, tush, shall we say, and then have it be gone after a time of spiritual release?  That’s been my experience.  

Anyway, I’m still struggling this week with the tension (literally and figuratively) between holding on and letting go and resting in Him, but God is building my faith in Him to handle it.  

(I hope you’ll forgive the digression, but if God’s word doesn’t matter in our daily lives, well, then it just doesn’t matter.)

One more ‘just so happens’ quote from my devotions today: (Oswald Chambers)
“Is the Word of God tremendously keen** to me 
as I hand it on to you, or does my life 
give the lie to the things I profess to teach?”
**‘keen’-intense piercing, eagerly desirous (Webster’s)

INFO:
This week we’re looking at vv. 7-9 in Psalm 37.

v. 7  “Be still before the LORD and wait patiently for him;
do not fret when people succeed in their ways, 
when they carry out their wicked schemes.”

Being still.  SUCH  a hard thing to do.  Last summer during the Olympics our pastor was talking about the track athletes and their races, the steeplechase in particular.  He told us when the runners are going at the speed it takes to clear those hurdles, IT IS HARD TO STOP.

I have been very purposeful each day the last week to just stop and go outside and look and listen.  I’m reading a book called God in the Yard that is helping me slow myself and but it takes effort. I have to plan ahead to carve out even 15 minutes to be still.

Crazy but true. And when I’ve been able to, God has spoken to me.

In Spurgeon’s Treasury of David, he says the verse is best rendered:
“Hold Thee Still”

my son Aaron and my grandson

Spurgeon goes on to quote St. Jerome:

“…the most difficult precept of action sinks into nothing when compared with this command to inaction.”
YOUR TURN:
What does it take for you to be still?
Look at the verses in Lamentations 3:24-26 (Is He your portion?) 
and Exodus 14:14 (If we stand still, what does God do?)
Your thoughts?

INFO:

The other half of verse 7 says, 
‘Waiting patiently for Him.’
The Amplified Bible says it this way:
“Patiently stay yourself upon Him.”
then there is v. 8  
“Refrain from anger and turn from wrath; do not fret–it leads only to evil.”

THOTS: ‘Stay yourself on Jesus.’ Stick like glue to Him. lean on Him.

And ‘do not fret’–how can that lead to evil?  This is not the scary, bad devil kind of evil but the ordinary, everyday kind that results when we take things into our hands. If you ask me, that is the worst kind, because it is so subtle.

When I take things into my own hands I like to manufacture answers to my own prayers.  I want to devise solutions to meet my needs and wants.  If I do that apart from God, it will only be evil. There will be no place for grace and therefore no energy.  My flesh will be tired.

I want God-breathed solutions, not my idea of the best thing.

I heard someone say once, Evil is ‘live’ spelled backwards.  Choose live–choose God.

The Psalmist goes on to say in v. 9

“For those who are evil will be destroyed, 
but those who hope in the Lord will inherit the land.”


If we know Jesus, we won’t be destroyed literally, but what is of the flesh will just plain die when there is no Spirit of God in it.  That’s how I read those verses.


YOUR TURN:
Next week we’ll talk a lot about inheriting ‘the land’ that God has given us.  Take time now to re-read through this Psalm again and underline how many times you see the word inherit.  You should find it in 6 or 7 places.
And tell me, what do you think about all those ‘wicked’ verses (which I conveniently avoided…)?

Any thoughts?

See you next week!

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7 thoughts on “Ps. 37 Week Three–Be Still in the Land

  1. Nancy, the quiet I've been practicing isn't a quiet time with the Word or my devotional or in prayer or with my journal–I've started with a book called God in the Yard JUST SITTING and listening and looking outside at least 15 minutes a day when I can. It has been pretty amazing….

    I think for me I've been so wired to DO something outside–go for a walk, read my Bible, or DO something in my quiet time. This has been very freeing, surrendering to God and letting Him speak to me and show me things.

    I've just started this practice….stay tuned!

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  2. What does it take for me to be still, to achieve quietness of spirit? Refocusing my attention on Christ, his attributes, and his blessings. My quiet time each morning is the easiest setting for this to take place. But I'm with you, Jody. What I crave is stillness of soul amidst the busy-ness, disappointments and difficulties of life. It can be achieved when I release everything stressful, trust in my competent God, and rest (Matt. 11:28-30). Easy to write; challenging to do. But practice should make perfect, right? “We are what we repeatedly do. Excellence, then, is not an act, but a habit”–Aristotle.

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  3. thank you Lisa, for your encouragement. The joy of sharing God's Word is that I grow in it, too.

    It's a joy to be in the Psalms community, hiding them in my heart.
    I'm gonna have to pray about how to approach the wicked verses. I'm sure they're there for a reason.

    Here's to resting in Him!

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  4. “…but if God's word doesn't matter in our daily lives, well, then it just doesn't matter.”
    Amen to that, Jody!

    And yes, it is so hard to just “stop.” I think of all the things that will go undone if I stop. And I start fretting about that. So the only way to accomplish either the stopping or the not fretting is for me to remember to rest in the presence of Jesus.

    Thanks for sharing what you're studying because it helps others too.

    (I'm never quite sure what to do about the wicked verses either. And we have a few in Psalm 71 also…)

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  5. Jody- Thank you once again for food to chew on…verse 8 makes me think of the James passage that says:

    My dear brothers, take note of this: Everyone should be quick to listen, slow to speak and slow to become angry,for man’s anger does not bring about the righteous life that God desires. Therefore, get rid of all moral filth and the evil that is so prevalent and humbly accept the word planted in you, which can save you. (James 1:19-21)

    Also I like how The Message translates Psalm 37:7-9

    Quiet down before God,
    be prayerful before him.
    Don’t bother with those who climb the ladder,
    who elbow their way to the top.

    8-9 Bridle your anger, trash your wrath,
    cool your pipes—it only makes things worse.
    Before long the crooks will be bankrupt;
    God-investors will soon own the store.

    Thanks for leading us to the heart of God through His word!

    Like

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