Monday, March 6, 2017

The Source

“All creatures look to you to give them their food at the proper time. When you give it to them, they gather it up; when you open your hand, they are satisfied with good things. When you hide your face, they are terrified; when you take away their breath, they die and return to the dust. When you send your Spirit, they are created, and you renew the face of the ground.” (Psalm 104:27-30 NIV)

It is so easy in our advanced, modern world to believe our existence and our destiny are in our hands.  The extremes of this thinking are seen in opposing views: we are to pull ourselves up by our own bootstraps, or we are totally dependent on societal forces beyond our control.  The former emphasizes taking personal responsibility; the latter focuses on government and personal charity to meet needs.  

What is often left out of the equation is the Creator and Sustainer of life. A reading of Psalm 104 puts life, and His role in it, back into its proper perspective.  (The psalm is too long to reprint, but you can read it here. The message clearly is we are totally dependent on God for our lives, generally and specifically.  He is the Source of everything. We may think we have earned our way or that our lone help lies with others, but both discount the centrality of the Lord in this life. Everything comes back to Him. 

The challenge for all of us is to find the balance between the extremes. To think we earn our way through our own efforts and abilities discounts the Source for giving us those abilities and the very strength to accomplish anything.  On the other hand, to think we are totally dependent on what society or individual people provide us (e.g., opportunities, love, etc.) again discounts the Source.  One leads to a false sense of independence, and the other to a mistaken belief our fate lies solely in the hands of others.  

Today, know, as the Psalmist declares, the Lord is the Source of everything.  If you are well positioned in this life, recognize the Lord’s hand in it. If you are struggling and life is not going the way in which you envisioned it, don’t blame others for your misfortune.  Rather, cry out to God for help and relief.  He is your Source for all that is good in your life and for the help when it isn’t.  

© Jim Musser 2017

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