No Match for God

Those who love your Name may exult in you.
Psalm 5:11
The fifth psalm is a song of struggle. The psalmist's convictions are strong, but they are under constant challenge. The person of faith must, it seems, put up with a great deal of resentment. Whether through gossip or violence (there seems to be no distinction between the two in this psalm), the deceitful are bent on destruction.

Yet the psalmist knows who and whose they are. Their opponents may triumph for an hour or a day, but they are no match for God. Indeed, the struggle isn't even a personal one, but has been taken on for the sake of all the faithful. 

This is something to remember when our backs are against the wall or when we are tempted to surrender the fight: Not only are we not our own, but we are not alone. Just as we belong to God, we also belong to one another. And it is this joy of belonging that comes from the Holy Spirit.

At the end of Acts 13, we read of threats made against those who preached the gospel. How discouraging this anger must have been to young believers—especially since its source was some of the leading men and women of the community. And yet they loved those who had brought them the good news, and they loved each other; and so, against all odds, the Holy Spirit put joy in their hearts in place of discouragement.

How might our lives be changed if we, like the ancient psalmist and like first century converts, looked to God rather than our detractors for affirmation.

And the disciples were filled with joy and with the Holy Spirit.
 Acts 13:52
Prayer after thinking about today's devotion:
When I feel that I'm under the gun, when I am overwhelmed by criticism, when I begin to forget who and whose I am, fill my heart with your Spirit, O God, In place of turmoil, grant me your peace; and in place of discouragement, joy.
After your own thanksgivings & petitions, close with the Lord's Prayer.
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