Summary: As disciples of Jesus Christ, we can live confidently and boldly knowing that God holds us in the palm of God's hand.
Today is one of two Sundays when we celebrate parenthood and family, as a nation. I have to agree with the thoughts expressed on the short video that we viewed that parenting is the greatest privilege one could have.
I realize that not all of us have or had idyllic home lives. Some of us had parents who harmed us. Not all of us are married, or currently living in nuclear families. Still, I think we know what a good family should be like and how relationships with friends should function. Based on these our general impressions, I’d like to focus on how the Lord is like a parent to us.
SOMEONE WHO CARES
The psalm begins with several verses of thanks and praise. Later these will change into a psalm of lament, or complaint. God has moved in the life of the Psalmist and the lives of the people of Israel with love and grace. God has been their light, their stronghold and their protector.
Parents want the very best for their children. God wants no less for his children. God wants to shower them with God’s love and grace. God wants them to experience the peace that passes understanding. An abundant life and freedom are desires of God for God’s people.
The Psalmist has not had an easy life. He has many adversaries. God has been with him as he has faced these adversaries. In verse 1 the Lord has been light. God has chased away the darkness with its fear and unknown. God has brought hope into the life of the Psalmist and God’s people.
God has acted like a stronghold. God has been a place to seek refuge; a place of safety. The Lord has been a place where the Psalmist could recover and renew his strength.
RESPONSE TO GRACE
In verse four the Psalmist announces how he will respond to God’s grace. His priority will be to live in God’s house and behold the beauty of the Lord. A relationship with God and not the practice of religion is the Psalmist’s goal.
Love begets love. The loving actions of parents teaches and inspires love in their children. God’s love and grace that is poured abundantly in our lives teaches us how to love and inspires us to respond in love.
We have many priorities in life. People at the time of the Psalmist did too. The Psalmist though declares that his primary goal is to nurture his relationship with God. Is that a goal that we share with the Psalmist?
I think many of us want to grow in our relationship with God. We want to understand more when we read the Bible and have God’s Word speak to us. We want prayer to be a vibrant, dynamic part of our lives. We want to be able to sense God’s presence in our lies and to experience that peace that passes understanding. We want a life that is abundant and free.
We are challenged to nurture that relationship. Relationships are built on more than texts and emails. Relationships need desire—a want to experience more. Relationships also need time. The Psalmist declares that he’s going to take the time to accomplish his desire.