December 27, 2010
Forget to Remember
"Praise the Lord, my soul, and forget not all his benefits --"
Psalm 103:2a (NIV)
Sometimes it is hard to accept that God can bring about His purposes through our trials. It is hard to see past our circumstances to a future that, for us, doesn't exist yet. But God is not constrained by time. He is not reined in by our circumstances. Because of this, we have to trust that our limited perspective simply can not process His higher purpose.
There is a temptation during these times to wrestle back the control from Him, telling Him through our actions that He can't be trusted. We say to Him, "I got this one, God."
David writes of this tendency in Psalm 103:2, "Praise the Lord, my soul, and forget not all His benefits" (emphasis mine). David knew that he had to remind himself not to forget what the Lord had done for him—and what He would do for him in the future. Like the rest of us, David struggled with remembering that God has a purpose in every trial, and a benefit waiting for those who will persevere.
I remember a time I ran impulsively ahead of the Lord because I didn't want to wait on His answer. We were in need of a computer and had a little money we could spend. Since we were in the stages of still paying off debt, it was money that could have been spent elsewhere. As I prayed about this decision, I felt God telling me to wait on this purchase. "God," I responded, "we can't wait any longer. We need a computer." I couldn't understand why He would tell me to wait, so I moved ahead with our plans to buy a computer.
I had wrestled the control back once again.
About a month after we got this new computer, my mom called me to ask if we still needed a computer. "Well, no," I told her, "we bought one already. Why?" She went on to explain that her friends were getting rid of a nearly new computer because they had decided to buy a laptop. Did we want it? In that moment I felt God remind me, "I told you to wait."
Even though this was difficult, it was a very powerful lesson that I have not forgotten. We ended up with two computers— but were minus a large chunk of money (that could have gone to paying off debt) invested in an unnecessary computer. God used this lesson to teach me that I have to wait on His purpose to be accomplished. When I do, my financial journey becomes intertwined with my spiritual one. This is part of growing in faith as we simultaneously grow in our relationship with Him. I can't forget to remember what He's done in the past, or I won't be able to cling to His promises for the future.
Dear Lord, I don't have this one. But You do. Help me to trust fully in You. Please bring to mind the things I can remember that will comfort me as I wait on You to act on my behalf in the future. In Jesus' Name, Amen.
Visit Marybeth's blog
Living Financially Free: Hard Earned Wisdom for Saving Your Money and Your Marriage by Marybeth and Curt Whalen
From Financially Frantic to Financially Free (CD) by Marybeth Whalen
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Do you forget to remember? Write down one example of God's goodness to you in the past.
Is there something that's happening to me now that I need to trust God to take care of in the future? How am I trying to take care of things on my own?
Deuteronomy 4:9, "Only give heed to yourself and keep your soul diligently, so that you do not forget the things which your eyes have seen and they do not depart from your heart all the days of your life; but make them known to your sons and your grandsons." (NASB)
I Chronicles 16:12, "Remember the wonders he has done, his miracles, and the judgments he pronounced." (NIV)
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