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Summary: THE SECRET OF CONTENTMENT IS TO BALANCE REALISTIC EXPECTATIONS OF SELF WITH LOFTY HOPE IN THE LORD

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BIG IDEA: THE SECRET OF CONTENTMENT IS TO BALANCE

REALISTIC EXPECTATIONS OF SELF WITH LOFTY HOPE IN THE LORD

I. (:1) REALISTIC EXPECTATIONS OF SELF

A. Humility in Attitude

1. How I think about myself

“O Lord, my heart is not proud”

not being puffed up with a sense of my own importance

2. How I think about others

“nor my eyes haughty”

not expressing arrogance or contempt towards others

B. Humility in Actions – Not biting off more than I can chew

1. Degree of Importance

“Nor do I involve myself in great matters”

2. Degree of Difficulty

“Or in things too difficult for me”

cf. the Pride surrounding the Tower of Babel incident

We must guard against striving to do what only God can do; God might desire to work through us, but we must be careful not to attempt such things in the flesh.

II. (:2) THE PEACE OF CONTENTMENT

A. Attained by Actively Focusing My Soul on the Lord’s Sufficiency

“Surely I have composed and quieted my soul”

B. Maintained by Quietly Resting My Soul on the Lord’s Lovingkindness

“Like a weaned child rests against his mother,

My soul is like a weaned child within me.”

III. (:3) LOFTY HOPE IN THE LORD

“O Israel, hope in the Lord From this time forth and forever.”

* * * * * * * * * *

DEVOTIONAL QUESTIONS:

1) How is this Attitude of Humility different from a passivity which pursues a course of mediocrity? How do we still strive for excellence in all things and yet remain in harmony with the tenor of this passage? When are our ambitions a problem and get in the way of

submitting to the Lord’s plan for our life?

2) How will our Contentment increase if we rest in our secure relationship with the Lord (the same type of relationship a weaned child enjoys resting against his mother) rather than anxiously striving to obtain more and more from the Lord? Think thru the struggle a

young child endures during the weaning process until he arrives at the point of rest and contentment. Are we still in the struggle phase or have we arrived at the restful phase?

3) What contributed to some of the Content of Israel’s Hope in the Lord? For what are we hoping? Think of how lofty our hopes should be.

4) Does our life reflect the tone of peace and quiet and restfulness that the psalmist portrays here? cf. some of the thoughts of the Beatitudes: “meek and lowly of heart”

Download the entire Psalms commentary in pdf format

(including notes on each psalm from other commentators)

from:

http://www.bibleoutlines.com


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