March 8, 2019

To Find the Grace in Anger

Please note: This post also appears on Psalm Today. In the future, all psalm meditations will appear on that blog instead of this one, so please bookmark this url: https://www.psalm.today — thanks!
But know that the Lord has set apart the faithful for himself; the Lord hears when I call to him. 
When you are disturbed, do not sin; ponder it on your beds, and be silent.
Ps. 4:3-4

Being set apart for God is one of the more phenomenal truths found in the scriptures. It's not just (and not even always) an honor. As often as not, it's an awesome (read: awe-ful) responsibility. Think of Noah and the ark, Jacob wrestling God, Israel in Egyptian bondage, Paul in prison, Stephen being stoned, and Christ on the cross.

Yes, we all have our own cross to bear, though they're seldom delivered in such biblical proportions. But with this responsibility comes blessing: the ear of God, and the discernment of the Spirit. Why does the seemingly unrelated Psalm 4:4 follow immediately after verse 3? Because, I think, it is a mark of the elect to ponder what disturbs them and to find the grace in anger, in pain, or even in persecution. The silence spoken of couldn't possibly be silence before God, for it is to God that I present what I'm pondering. Because I bare my soul to God, I know when to speak before humans and when to be silent; when to move on, and when to respond.

Help me through my anger, Lord. I pray for the wisdom of silence, but let my sullenness ever be mistaken for your silence, for when you opened not your mouth before your enemies, it was to gather words of unconditional forgiveness. May my response be like yours, and in that same spirit, I pray as you taught me...

Sing this song until it's memorized and can be sung throughout the day...

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