We’ve all heard the saying, “can’t see the forest, for all of the trees.” Interesting concept. i was struck this morning by the importance in the passage I was reading. I am currently reading through the psalms again. I generally go there when I’m done a study, because, well frankly, I’m not sure where God is leading me next in the Scriptures. I always find great wisdom, strength and comfort in the familiar words of the Psalms. It’s like having someone sing you to sleep, which is exactly what God is said to do ( see Zephaniah 3:17).
The familiar verse I ran across this morning is
“Cease striving and know that I am God.” Psalm 46:10
But for the first time, I think, I was so struck by the power of the context surrounding these words of exhortation.
“God is our refuge and strength, A very present help in trouble.
2 Therefore we will not fear, though the earth should change
And though the mountains slip into the heart of the sea;
3 Though its waters roar and foam,
Though the mountains quake at its swelling pride.
4 There is a river whose streams make glad the city of God,
The holy dwelling places of the Most High.
5 God is in the midst of her, she will not be moved;
God will help her ]when morning dawns.
6 The nations made an uproar, the kingdoms tottered;
He raised His voice, the earth melted.
7 The Lord of hosts is with us;
The God of Jacob is our stronghold. Selah.
8 Come, behold the works of the Lord,
Who has wrought desolations in the earth.
9 He makes wars to cease to the end of the earth;
He breaks the bow and cuts the spear in two;
He burns the chariots with fire.
10 “Cease striving and know that I am God;
I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth.”
11 The Lord of hosts is with us;
The God of Jacob is our stronghold.” Psalm 46:1-10
In my own life, I find it hard to “fret not,” or to “Cease striving.” But now I see that the biggest reason I have a hard time with this is I’m not seeing the context in which God delivers this exhortation. I’m not seeing the forest for all of the trees. The context is the power and Sovereignty of God.
Come, Behold the works of the Lord. The Lord is conquering nations, overthrowing kingdoms, making wars to cease, He breaks weapons and burns chariots.
It blesses my soul so much, to see how gentle and yet how mighty our God is. He is mighty over our enemies, yet gentle with us. Like a New Father gingerly handles his newborn son or daughter. God hold us firmly in His right hand, while He fights our enemies with the other.
Looking at it from this point of view, even with some of the things I am facing,
definitely makes it easier for me to loosen my grip and yield to my Mighty, yet
Gentle Savior and Lord.
Cease striving and KNOW that I am God. My call is to know Him and make Him known. To seek first His kingdom, He’ll take care of the rest.