Since we don't have Bible study tonight ... lousy weather ... I thought I'd share a "lesson" with you here on my blog. That way, we can still "meet together" this week.
So ... go grab your Bible real fast ... and I'll wait here. :)
Okay, you're back ... here we go.
We've been talking about relationships in SoZo lately. Last Sunday, we talked about confronting others when they need it and being confronted when we need it for ourselves. Tonight, I want us to think about how we should respond when people "rise up against us," like it says in the Scripture passage we're gonna look at.
Open your Bible and read Psalm 124 - yep, the whole chapter. It's pretty short. You can also read it below, if you so desire ...
"If the Lord had not been on our side - let Israel now say - if the Lord had not been on our side when people rose up against us, they would have swallowed us alive because of their burning anger against us. The waters would have engulfed us; a torrent would have overwhelmed us. Yes, the raging waters of their fury would have overwhelmed our very lives. Blessed be the Lord, who did not let their teeth tear us apart! We escaped like a bird from a hunter's trap. the trap is broken, and we are free! Our help is from the Lord, who made the heavens and the earth."
Take a second to think about how people "rise up against us" sometimes. Write down some of your answers somewhere if you like. But think about it ...
~ What does it mean for someone to "rise up against us?"
~ How do people rise up against us?
Maybe by gossiping about us ... by calling us names or tearing us down ... by not believing in us? What about someone dissing our family or the way we sing or the way we play soccer ... or maybe someone making fun of us or being hateful to us because we stand up for Jesus? Have any of these things ever happened to you? Think of some of your own scenarios ... when have people risen up against you? What was it that they said or did?
How did that person or situation make you feel?
Probably pretty crumby. It is never fun to be persecuted, looked down upon, disliked, or slandered.
Psalm 124 (and our own life experiences) tells us that these situations might "swallow us up" and "overwhelm us." Basically, when mean or evil things happen to us, it can really start to bring us down ... we may even become super distracted or even consumed by our discouragement. BUT!!! What I want y'all to think about tonight is the HOPE Psalm 124 gives us. ... Look at verse 1 again ...
"If the Lord had not been on our side ..."
That means that God IS on our side! And that means God is going to help us through those times when people rise up against us. It is inevitable that people and situations are going to discourage us, tear us down, humiliate us, harm us, make us feel horrible ... BUT GOD will sustain us. He will be our HELP! ... Look at verse 8 again ...
"Our help is from the Lord, who made the heavens and the earth."
Yep ... the same God who made everything we see on this planet loves us, EACH of us, enough to be our Helper ... to stand by us and build us up ... in the most difficult of times. So take courage in that, my SoZo-ers! If you are discouraged or feel beaten down today because someone is hatin' on you, take heart! Cry out to God for help. He is ready to comfort you and give you strength.
Take a couple of minutes to seek God for His help and strength. Meet with God ... He is ready to fill you up! :) I love you guys! See y'all Sunday morning. And don't forget about lunch at my house from 12:30 to 2:30pm this Sunday afternoon. Hope you can make it! :)