He Will Not Forsake His Saints

“Trust in the Lord and do good; dwell in the land and befriend faithfulness.  Delight yourself in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart.  Commit your way to the Lord; trust in Him, and He will act.  He will bring forth your righteousness like the light, and your justice as the noon-day.  Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for Him…”  Ps. 37:3-7

Do you realize what promises are held in just these four verses? There are four promises for the four verses.  This little passage — even all of Psalm 37 — have been a comfort to me for several years now, since I first discovered the psalm hidden in my Bible.  The heading above the Psalm, in my English Standard Version Bible, says “He Will Not Forsake His Saints”.  These four verses illustrate that well.  One day I broke them down and wrote them out in my own words, to better understand the promises held within.

“Trust in the Lord, and do good…” (v.3a)

I didn’t hear about trusting God until I read a book called “The Christian’s Secret to a Happy Life” when I was sixteen.  The book was written in the nineteenth century, and the title, however funny it may sound, clearly coincided with what was within the pages.  I had heard of honoring, worshipping and fearing God; loving and obeying God, but never trusting God.  I probably hadn’t been listening, but nevertheless, this book opened an entirely new door for me as I realized what it meant to truly trust God.  So “trust in the Lord” — and then what?  Surely trusting is hard enough on its own, and I will be writing on it in the future, but in addition to trusting God, he wants us to “do good”.  This “doing” is a direct product of the trusting.  When someone tries to “do” without trusting God, they end up flustered, blustered and utterly frustrated.

“…dwell in the land, and befriend faithfulness.” (v.3b)

“Dwell in the land” refers to the land God had given the Israelites — the Promised Land, the land they were living in.  The land David was the king of.  God asks us to dwell in the land of the present, not dwell on the future land we hope to attain.  This is a huge struggle for me.  Today is just a way to get to tomorrow, because tomorrow is when it all “happens”.  No!  Dwell here and now, because that’s where God has you working for Him.  The second half of this phrase is what we are to do in this time: “befriend faithfulness”. You’ve heard it before: be faithful where you are, and opportunities will come your way.  Jesus put it quite plainly:

“One who is faithful in very little is also faithful in much, and one who is dishonest with very little is also dishonest with much.” (Lk.16:10)

Dishonesty equals cheating.  How do we cheat God in the land he placed us in?  By being distracted from Him.  If God were your husband, what would he say if he were to see you hanging on the arm of another man, distracted by his charms and sweet nothings?  Your husband would say you were cheating him of your love.  So it is with God.  This applies to more than underage relationships — this applies to anything that keeps us from our walk with the Lord. 

 “Delight yourself in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart.” (v.4)

What a promise!  Delight yourself in knowing and loving your Father, Creator, Lord and King, and He will give you the desires of your heart.  There are some things involved here, however, that must be brought to light.  As we love and learn more about our Lord, the desires of our hearts change.  As our hearts become more connected to His, our desires fit with what He desires for us.  We change as we delight in Him, because the power of His love changes us.  So the more we delight in Him, he changes us and our desires to fit His plan, and then He fulfills our dreams — because they are His also.

“Commit your way to the Lord; trust in Him, and He will act.” (v.5)

Committing our pathway to the Lord is essential to our walk with Him.  I have spent nine years of my life with horses.  I would be riding my mount down a trail, and he would suddenly decide that another one looked better — or more comfortable, or led toward home, his comfort zone.  It would take a few kicks to his ribs to get his attention and turn him back to the right way.  He didn’t know my plan — he saw the temporal discomfort and decided it wasn’t what he wanted.  He didn’t know the reward I had for him at the end of the ride.  He didn’t trust me.  As humans, with capabilities far above that of a horse, what excuse have we to refuse to trust the Maker of the universe?  “Trust in Him, and He will act”.  He cannot act on our behalf if we are not trusting Him to do so; commit your way to Him, and He will lead you on.

“He will bring forth your righteousness as the light, and your justice as the noonday.” (v.6)

First, commit your way to Him; secondly, trust Him to act.  The action He takes is written above.  He will make us righteous — He will be our justice.  We cannot “be good” on our own strength, a fact I discovered the hard way.  He must be our righteousness, and He will be, if we commit to Him and allow Him to work.

“Be still before the Lord and wait patiently for Him…” (v.7a)

Finally, be still.  Don’t be too busy for God.  Wait for Him to work.  He can’t work when you’re so busy working for Him you haven’t time for God Himself!  The being still and waiting can be the hardest, because it feels like you’re not accomplishing anything.  But that is the entire point!  WE aren’t accomplishing anything — He is.  He is our Trust, our Delight, our Righteousness, our Justice, and our Peace in the stillness.  He will fulfill our desires, because our desires are also His. 

He Will Not Forsake His Saints.

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6 Responses

  1. Oh Phylicia! This is one of my favorite Psalms as well… and you have done a beautiful and greatly inspiring job of using this amazing passage of Scripture to proclaim God’s character and motivate His saints to trust, delight, commit, and rest in Him. Thank you, thank you. I have truly enjoyed reading this.

  2. Hey, Phylicia!
    I would LOVE to put you as a link from my blog. Thank you for your kind comment. I am always hoping that God will use my blog to touch someone else. I love getting comments….it blesses me. I don’t mind at all if you link my blog from yours; I consider it an honor.

  3. Phy, I hope it was that you were not listening and that it was not a lack of teaching to trust God! I think even we your parents can struggle with trusting God – how wonderfully special it is to read your words and be blessed and encouraged by them. Keep up the study and the writing. Want some tea? Love, Mom

  4. Hi Phylicia ~ Thank you for the comment! I’ve added you to my blogroll.

    How neat to hear of another distance learning student! I know another girl enrolled with the program at Liberty Univeristy too. As for me, I majored in English with Thomas Edison Sate College. It was definitely a great way to earn a degree from home. 🙂

    Have a blessed day,
    Amanda

  5. “So the more we delight in Him, he changes us and our desires to fit His plan, and then He fulfills our dreams — because they are His also.”
    Wow, that is beautiful! I very much enjoyed reading this post! Thank you.

    How neat that you were able to hear the Mallys speak! Our church is having both a Strong in the Lord and a Radiant Purity conference this July. I have been to a SITL conference before, but this will be the first time I’ll get to help with the set up for it. I love helping with conferences! 🙂

    Also, I would be happy to add you to my links page! 🙂

    Blessings to you!

  6. Great post! I loved the horse story/illustration… 🙂 BTW i was trying to find you on Facebook and well.. let’s just say that there are over 500 Phylicia’s… I would love to add you though. You can find me as Mme Pinson 🙂

    God bless 🙂

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