Current Events–a bit long, but worth it.
Yesterday evening the town zoning board gave their decision to deny my request to add the activity of renting storage spaces to my commercial property here on the farm. They did say I can apply again after working with the zoning enforcement officer.
This decision was a shock, but not a surprise, as I had noted their reticence towards my request in the initial meeting. This denial is a threat to our financial situation, as most of our retirement income is from renting out places on the farm.
When we got home, I was able to start letting go of my fear and anger by lifting my soul to God, reminding myself of His admonition to “be subject to the governing authorities” (Rom. 13:1) and then had a good start on sleep.
However, I then woke up at about 2 am and was again wrestling with this decision. So, I got up and again lifted my soul to God (first listening to myself, then listening to God, and in the end taking to myself)
I wrote in my journal, telling him of my frustration and fear, getting out my thoughts and emotions. Then I moved on to listening to Him. “But, Lord, you again brought to mind Psalm 37, my ‘when I’m in trouble Psalm,’ which says ‘Fret not yourself because of [the unjust], neither be envious against the workers of [wrong doing].’ I can leave those who gave an unjust decision to you. They are your business, not mine. I will forgive and pray for them.
“My responsibility is to ‘Trust in the Lord,’ which I can do by offering the sacrifice of thanksgiving, knowing that you have a plan, you are going to work things out. And then I must ‘do good.’ Give me wisdom in what good I should do here, Lord. One is certainly to forgive those who have refused to give what I desire, and I choose to do that.
“Psalm 37 continues, pointing out that If I trust in Him and do good, ‘So shall you dwell in the land and truly you will be fed.’ So, you will take care of me as I walk in obedience to you, Lord. Even if they take away my retirement income, you will provide for me.
“’Delight yourself also in the Lord,’ which means turning my attention away from my desires and from this situation to my Great and Mighty God. You, Lord, have so many facets to delight in. You are the combiner of opposites: Love for sinners and Wrath against sin; Mercy and Justice; Truth and Grace; Firmness and Gentleness; Total knowledge and the ability to not remember our sins.
“You, Lord Jesus, are the One who took a body of flesh so that you might die and through death defeat the devil and the fear of death, freeing those who were enslaved by Satan. You have “qualified us to be partakes of the inheritance of the saints in the Kingdom of light’ (Col. 1:12).
You are the One who breathed the stars, who shepherded them into galaxies, who knows each of them by name, who arranged the solar system, who hung our world on nothing. You are the earth Spinner, the dawn Bringer, the Beginner and Ender of history.
You are the Lover of your enemies, the Savior of your foes, the gracious God of your rebellious and selfish creatures. You have given us the opposite of what we deserve: forgiveness, cleansing and belonging, adopting us into your family, into your Kingdom, into your great plans. You have given us love, grace, your Spirit and your presence, along with purpose, hope and a future. You, in your greatness, are taking the present earth and heaven to a conclusion and are carrying us with you!
You are delightfully glorious, wonderfully good and kindly gracious. When I delight in you, the problems and pains of the present fade into the background; I can see better how they fit into your plans, how they become the means of honoring you further with the sacrifice of thanksgiving and in deepening my faith.
“Psalm 37 continues, ‘Commit your way to the Lord, trust also in Him and he will bring it to pass. He will bring out your righteousness as the light and your judgment as the noon day sun.’ As I let go and let you work, you will bring out the wrongness of the decision and the rightness of what I asked. This will be your doing, not mine. I need to leave it to you.
“’Rest in the Lord and wait patiently for Him. Fret not yourself…’ I so easily fret about such things, being denied what is clearly allowed to others, but not to me. I can let go of this decision, hold onto your personal purpose for me here, and rise above the frustration, disappointment and fear.
Psalm 37 then says,“’Cease from anger, and forsake wrath: fret not yourself in any wise to do evil. For…those that wait upon the LORD, they shall inherit the earth.’ You will take care of me, so I choose to reject my anger and to trust in you, Lord Jesus, knowing that you will do what is right. ‘In the day of my trouble I will call upon you: for you WILL answer me’ (Ps. 86:7).
“Thank you for this challenge, which is driving me into your Word, into deeper trust, into honoring you in faith and obedience. You are wise, you are good and I choose to rest in you. “My soul, find rest in God alone, for my hope comes from Him” (Ps. 62:5).
Truly, ‘He makes me lie down in green pastures’ (Ps. 23:2).”