Thoughts from Kimber Gilbert
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The LORD upholds all who are falling and raises up all who are bowed down. The eyes of all look to you, and you give them their food in due season. You open your hand; you satisfy the desire of every living thing.
God as our provider is something many of us acknowledge from time to time. However, this picture is more definitive when we see Him as the perfect Father, the first person of the Godhead. Jesus shows us in the Lord’s prayer (Matthew 6:9-13) the holiness, the authority, the provision, and the mercy of our Heavenly Father. “Give us this day our daily bread” is a well-known section of that prayer and coupled with the portion of our verse today “you give them their food in due season” demonstrates a Father who provides in the day-to-day and in seasons of want or need. In essence, we have a Father who is concerned with and desires for all to come to Him for sustenance.
The mercy and grace of a loving Creator is illustrated in that even people far from Him reap the benefits of His provision, “For he makes his sun rise on the evil and on the good and sends rain on the just and on the unjust” (Matthew 5:45). God’s benevolence should be recognized by all.
Psalm 145 testifies to a Father that concerns Himself with the brokenness and neediness of man and His Creation. The imagery of God upholding, raising up, and opening His hands is powerful because God is doing the heavy action, not us. When we fall, He picks us up. When we bow down, He raises us up. This Father we praise, and worship, does not just stand back and watch the world crumble but can and does step in and intercede as a demonstration of His perfect and loving will.
And the Father gives good gifts! Matthew 7:11 says “If you then, who are evil, know how to give good gifts to your children, how much more will your Father who is in heaven give good things to those who ask him!” We want to prove our affection and love for our children by giving them things and providing for them, but it is nothing compared to the gifts the Father gives. We simply and humbly must ask.
Humility in the asking acknowledges our inability to accomplish anything of eternal significance without God. Luke 11:13 is a complementary verse to Matthew 7:11 with Jesus stating that the good gift from the heavenly Father is the Holy Spirit! The Trinity is clearly indicated here: the Son pointing man back to the Father, the Father providing for man, and the Holy Spirit as the ultimate provision for man.
God, in His infinite wisdom, knew that man needed more than just food for daily living. He does provide this, but perishable food is only good for the perishable man. Spiritual, unperishable food provides for those who follow Him because it lasts an eternity.
This morning as I write, I ask myself “Do I believe that God will provide?” Looking at my past, I would say there have been times I have doubted God. The results are anxiety, worry, and exhaustion as I tried to be a father and provider for my family, not only physically but spiritually.
Make no mistake, we are to work hard to provide for those under our care, but misguided motivation can damage those relationships and our relationship with God. We try to assume the role that only God can do. We become ungrateful and fight generosity.
So, join with me in prayer today to ask for softening in our hearts, to bow before Him who can and wants to give us good gifts and to respond with openhandedness and thanksgiving. Have a wonderful day!
Dear Heavenly Father,
Show me all the wonderful ways you have blessed me. Continually remind me of your mercy and compassion towards me. May my doubts turn to trust and may my pride turn to humility. The gift of your Son, Jesus, is precious to me. It is the beginning and the end of all your goodness made available to me. In His beautiful and powerful Name, I pray. Amen.
“The Lord is righteous in all His ways, and kind in all His works. The Lord is near to all who call on Him, to all who call on Him in truth. He will fulfill the desire of those who fear Him; He will also hear their cry for help and save them. The Lord watches over all who love Him, but He will destroy all the wicked. My mouth will speak the praise of the Lord, and all flesh will bless His holy name forever and ever.”
Behind the Scenes
David wrote this psalm as a psalm of praise to God. I love the words of this psalm so much. They resonate deep in my soul and they speak to the amazing character of our amazing God. Something that is so precious about the psalms is that we get to rejoice with the psalmists. We get to sing praises to God, cry out in need, and resonate with deep longing. I love that God chose to include these precious songs in His holy word because they give us a glimpse into the humanity and the vulnerability of faith.
As I read today’s psalm, I can’t help but praise with David. I look at the words He wrote nearly three thousand years ago, near the end of David’s life, and I am in awe. The same God that David praised, I praise today. The same attributes that David knew to be true of God then are still true today! His promises never cease! His goodness does not run out! His perfection is never tainted nor does it fail.
Throughout generation after generation, our God remains “righteous in all His ways, kind in all His works.” He is still the God who is “near to all who call on Him, to all who call on Him in truth.” He still works intimately with His followers to “fulfill the desires of those who fear Him.” He is still faithful to “hear their cry for help and save them.” The Lord, ever present and ever faithful still “watches over all who love Him.” And He is still the holy God who will one day “destroy all the wicked.”
I rejoice with David and with thousands of years of faithful saints. Our God is still, and will forever be, the God who is worthy of praise! I raise my voice in a hallelujah, speaking the praises of my Lord all the days of my life. He is still the God who is blessed. He is still the God whose name is holy. And it will be forever and ever!
Make It Real
It’s so easy to get comfortable in our lives and lose a heart of praise. I know I am so guilty of that. I can have these mountain top experiences with God where the veil between heaven and earth seems to thin and I get a glimpse of His glory. And then I go back to my everyday life, so quick to forget, so quick to get pulled back into the muck. It’s so easy for us to lose the praise from our lips. So quickly the worries of the world or the cares of the day can sneak in and steal our praise.
So, what does it look like to live a life of praise? How do we hold onto the awe that we feel when we behold His goodness? How do we walk in a way that sings His praises continually while surrounded by the mundane, the routine, and the temporal? I think the answer is to invite Him into all of it. He is the God who promises to be near to those who love Him. That means that we don’t have to ascend a mountaintop to meet God or to experience His presence. He is near and we can walk in worship of Him.
This week, I want to challenge you to look for ways to worship in the mundane. Look for those special touches of God (I like to call them God-winks) where God is present in the everyday, where He makes His presence known, or where you see His fingerprints on your day. Be aware of the closeness of our God and take opportunities to lean into them. Give Him thanks, give Him praise. Look for ways to acknowledge the eternal God who is so worthy of all our praise. I promise, as you start to look, you will begin to see Him more and more.
End in Prayer
My eternal King. I am so in awe of You. Teach me to see you in everyday moments. Teach me to hear Your voice, see Your hand, and notice Your touch. Teach me to lift up a song of praise continually. Help me to see that I do not have to experience You only in mountaintop experiences. But that You are near and that You are close even in the mundane. I want to praise You with my life. Please heighten my senses to see You more and give You praise.
In the name of Jesus Christ,