Thursday, April 25, 2013

My Rock and my Redeemer

"May the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in your sight, oh Lord my Rock and my Redeemer."  Psalm 19:14

I have known this verse since for as long as I can remember - it is as easily recitable as John 3:16 to me!  .An amazing woman and pastor's wife, Charm Fields, has had us recite this for as long as I can remember.  When I first learned it, it was like a wonderful prayer.  Many times as I repeated it, I wasn't even paying attention to the words.  But there have been times that it has come back to my mind in the moments I needed it - the way all of God's word does as we take time to memorize and pray through it.

Today I was getting ready for the day and it came to mind as I was praying.  But something strange happened.  Usually as I get to the end - the "Lord my Rock and my Redeemer" part, I kinda mumble through it.  After all, the asking of God to change and reshape our hearts and words is the important part, right?  You could easily insert any name of God there (in my mind), it just happened to be what the Psalmist thought at that moment.

But as I was praying, the end part became a really important, very clear part of the verse.  It was the part that God wanted me to think on.  He is my Rock and my Redeemer!  There is nothing small or insignificant about that!  Because he is my Rock, he is my strength - the one I lean on, stand on, the one that is firm and unchanging - so unlike me.  He is the where my strength comes from.

And he is my Redeemer.  He has ransomed me, rescued me, saved me.  He took my sins and bought life for me with his blood.  Nothing else can replace that - and nothing else has too!  His redemption of me is a permanent thing.

It is because he is these two particular things that I CAN have thoughts and words that are pleasing to him.  It's not a prayer to "try harder" (which is what I so often find myself doing) but rather to live in the truth that the old me is dead and the new me (because of his redemption and because he is unchanging) has words that give life!  These words are of joy, peace, encouragement, hope, and meaning rather than cutting down and causing death and harm.  Because of him my heart is new is the things that flow from it are also life giving and life sustaining.

I'm not a seminary grad.  I don't have fancy letters after my name.  Sometimes I think, "I should have known this before!"  But I am thankful for the things he shows me new everyday - even from "old" things.  

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