How does one set our heart? There are times we need to reset our hearts from being wounded, that’s for sure.
This Psalm is speaking of setting our hearts on a pilgrimage, a journey. The Israelites would take a journey and go up to Jerusalem to celebrate certain feasts. As they went, “Blessed are those whose strength is in you, who have set their hearts on pilgrimage.” (Psalm 84: 5)
How did they journey? By foot and with an expectant heart. Here’s how they went, “As they pass through the Valley of Baca (weeping) they make it a place of springs.” (Psalm 84: 6)
- With joyful expectations within these pilgrims, they transform their places of difficulty into places of refreshment.
What difficult situation can we make into a time of refreshment? Rain and water bring refreshment, growth and quenches our thirst. It does wonderful things to the land too.
“The autumn rains also cover it with pools. They go from strength to strength till each appears before God in Zion.” (Psalm 84: 6-7)
The refreshment of our Living Water, Jesus, brings strength, as they enter His temple, the dwelling place.
- The place of worship strengthens us.
- The enemy loves to keep us from this place.
“How lovely is your dwelling place, O Lord Almighty. (Psalm 84: 1)
No matter what, “The Lord God is a sun and shield. The Lord bestows favor and honor; no good things does He withhold from those whose walk is blameless. (Psalm 84: 11)
Did we hear that? When our walk is blameless, God does not withhold from us? He bestows favor and honor. When I looked up the meaning of bestow it says, a much fancier and honorable way of presenting a gift to someone. If God is honorably presenting us with favor and honor, how could He withhold? He just keeps blessing, lavishing, and pouring out to us. If we see God, not in this glorious way, then we are not seeing His true character.
Remember what Joseph went through? He was falsely accused, abandoned by his brothers, sold into slavery yet still declared, “You intended to harm me, but God intended it all for good. He brought me to this position so I could save the lives of many people.” (Genesis 50: 20)
He certainly did just that. He became the Prime Minister supplying food during a famine, and God brought his family back to him to receive God’s goodness through his hands, through his heart. God had reset his wounded heart, even through the pain.
- Expect God to turn things around in your life.
- Trust Him in your journey, even when the road seems long.
(Shared from Psalm 84, Modified)
Jesus Had A Painful Journey
As He is standing before a high priest, He is asked about His teaching. He tells those questioning him, “I said nothing in secret. Why question me? Surely they know what I said.” (John 18: 26-27)
The officials didn’t like his answer, so they struck Jesus in His face. Jesus asked, “Why do you strike me, if I spoke truth?” (John 18: 23)
He is then sent to Caiaphas, the High Priest to give an answer.
- They didn’t know they were speaking to the one who is the answer, who is Truth.
The scene changes and here’s old Simon Peter, standing by the fire keeping warm, when he is asked once again, “You are not one of his disciples, are you? (John 18: 25)
- When someone asks a question with a question, they probably already know the answer.
Simon Peter answered with his second denial saying, “I Am not!” (John 18: 25)
- The I am not, denied the I AM, again.
- Telling the truth was just one word away for Peter.
- If he had taken the not out of his statement it would have changed to truth.
- Choices come with either a simple yes or no, at any given moment.
A man in the crowd speaks up, addressing Simon Peter, saying, “Didn’t I see you with Him in the olive grove? Again, Peter denied it and at that moment a rooster began to crow.” (John 18: 25-27)
- It’s always good to think before we give an answer.
Suddenly, Jesus’ words flashed through Peter’s mind: “Before the rooster crows twice, you will deny three times that you even know me.” And he broke down and wept. (Mark 14: 72)
Jesus knew everything He would go through in His life. He saw prophetically, the very moment, and heard the rooster crow, as Peter denied Him. He knew which disciple would betray Him and which would faithfully serve Him.
He sees into our lives and knows what will make us turn away, what will catapult us, and what torment we may endure; but He still calls us to that place of dwelling with Him, of serving Him, of knowing Him!
- His heart was wounded, and our heart is healed.
- Everything we endure in this life, He has been afflicted with.
When He went to the cross, He took our broken hearts and then made them whole. Only an unconditionally loving God can do that. His heart was pierced so that our hearts could be changed.
(Shared from John 18: 19-38, Modified)
Other Kings to Rule And Reign
Jotham, age twenty-five, becomes the king of Judah for sixteen years. He followed the ways of the Lord, yet, “He did not enter the temple of the Lord.”
How can one follow the Lord and not worship Him? It happens all the time!
After Jotham’s death, Ahaz becomes king at age twenty. He was not a man after God’s own heart. He served and worshiped the idols of Baal.
As I read through the Old Testament, I see clearly the importance of serving God with an undivided heart. Our hearts are to be set apart for Him, and Him alone. It appears that the original covenant included having hearts circumcised, hearts following hard after the Lord. That covenant today is still the same, “You must love the LORD your God with all your heart, all your soul, all your strength, and all your mind. And, ‘Love your neighbor as yourself.”
(Shared from 2 Chronicles 27-28, Modified)
UNBROKEN LOVE SERIES
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