“’Because he loves me,’ says the LORD, ‘I will rescue him; I will protect him, for he acknowledges my name.’ “
You, Lord Jesus, are a wonder, able in your incarnation to combine the unimaginable: you were both God and man, heavenly and earthly, infinite and finite, all-knowing and in need of teaching, perfect and learning obedience. No one else could have been these mutually exclusive opposites!
I exalt you for your wisdom, your insight, your ability to put together things that we cannot unite even in our farthest imagination. You are the complete One, the perfect One, the holy One, the worthy One.
You also put together things in our lives that seem opposites. Psalm 91 says, “Because You have made the LORD Your dwelling place—the Most High, who is my refuge— no evil shall be allowed to befall you, no plague come near your tent” (Ps. 91:9-10 ESV). But then I think of Job, a man who made you his refuge, yet he suffered great tragedy, heartache, sickness, pain and then, in addition, had problems both with his wife and his “friends.”
This is hard for us to understand. We must turn to you, Lord Jesus, as you have a bigger and better view of things. Your understanding of harm or evil is different than ours. Evil or harm is not what makes us uncomfortable or disappointed or gives pain. No, evil and harm are what damage us spiritually, what drive us away from you.
As we make you our refuge, you are always there to protect us from spiritual harm, “Because he holds fast to me in love, I will deliver him; I will protect him, because he knows my name. When he calls to me, I will answer him; I will be with him in trouble; I will rescue him and honor him” (Ps. 91:14,15 ESV). And so you did for Job, Abraham, Joseph, David, Daniel and Paul.
Praise be to You, Lord Jesus, that you reveal to us wisdom, understanding and knowledge so we may join you in what you are doing by offering the sacrifice of thanksgiving in each happening, no matter how painful or problematical it may be.
Praise you that you have given us the armor to wear so that we may avoid spiritual harm in whatever you bring us through. You are faithful to deal with evil, to protect us, to give needed grace, to carry us along, to deliver us at the right time, to work out your purposes in our lives. Glory be to you. You are worthy of worship, honor, praise and exaltation. I bow before you now in amazed worship, and I rise up in wholehearted praise to live in joyful obedience to you throughout today.
Prayer: “Lord, help me to think as you do, to view difficulties with your eyes, as opportunities to join you in what you are doing, to honor you, to demonstrate your grace to those around me.
Help me to see the fires of affliction as a means of burning away the dross in my life. Help me to take up your grace, to move into and through suffering and pain with endurance, to learn from it the lessons you have for me. May I consistently honor you in trust demonstrated through praise. Amen.”