I am going to ask you a question that I found revealing. If given a choice between Psalm 42 or 43, to which psalm do you gravitate? Both psalms end with the same words: Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God. But the psalms take very different routes to that ending.
Psalm 42 seeks living water from a living God with worship as the aim.
Psalm 43 seeks vindication from outside enemies and an ungodly nation.
Psalm 42 is full of humble tears and questions and joining with others in a procession
Psalm 43 asks God to be a stronghold, and praise becomes a victory dance.
One psalm feels like a battle cry, the other seems to be a song of communal praise.
Which psalm do you gravitate toward, and what does that say about you?
We each have our own personalities; even as we relinquish more of our hearts to Jesus, we don’t become someone else. As we age, we more often become more of what we ever were…more in touch and in love with our own perspectives, our own lifestyles, our own insecurities, our own habitual responses to people and situations. As a former pastor once said, our prevailing sins become our friends, and God doesn’t take away our friends. We become more set in our ways.
That is not what I want for the final lap of my life. I want more of Jesus…more love, more curiosity, more wisdom, less defensiveness. I want to be that older woman that people flock to for the godly presence I bring to life. I want to become less, so Jesus can become more. I know people like that, and I want to be counted among that throng. I am not there yet, by any means!
As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, O God; my soul thirsts for God, for the living God.
I cannot help but see life through the prisms of my own eyes and brain. I need to be transformed, not confirmed. And that transformation will only last if Jesus kneads himself into my soul. Otherwise, I will continue in my own personality and become more of what I already am.
Redeem what you can of me, Jesus. Slay what you must. Give me the joy of your saving help again.