Where are your eyes?
1 Chronicles 16:11
“See the Lord and His strength; seek His presence continually.”
Last night in youth group, we talked about Psalms 4.
David was fleeing the kingdom that GOD gave him to avoid being killed by his own son.
David is in one of the worst possible situations that we could imagine. His own family is looking for him to murder him. And it isn’t just like a “My dad is going to kill me when he finds out that I crashed his car…” kind of murder. It is literal, death murder.
In Psalms chapter 4, David shows many characteristics that we can look at for our own lives, when things aren’t going as we may have planned them.
Things go wrong for David, and he turns his eyes to God immediately. He doesn’t look to other things of the world, but looks to the Creator of the world with his problems.
We all have that thing that we look to when things go wrong.
It could be music, your boyfriend or girlfriend, or drugs, or friends, or any of those things that we use to “escape” our problems.
Just because we can go to these things doesn’t mean that we SHOULD go to these things.
In John 4:14, Jesus is talking to the woman at the well, and He tells her,
“But whoever drinks of the water that I will give him will never be thirsty again. The water that I will give him will become in him a spring of water welling up to eternal life.”
Right here Jesus really lays out that what He has to offer will satisfy.
I think that most of us know from experience that everything we look to aside from Jesus, only satisfies temporarily.
Our quick fixes for problems, whether it be friends, music, or substances, or something else, they don’t take away any pain, or problem.
They just distract us from the problem for a time. Music is my struggle. When I get upset, I crank it up, and while I’m listening to it, my mind is off of the problem, but the second the song ends, that problem is right back there staring me in the face.
While we can distract ourselves from life’s problems with these different things, Jesus promises us that He will satisfy our needs. He pulls us through our difficulties.
I’m not saying that with Jesus there won’t be any difficulties.
James 1:2-4 lays it out for us, “Count it all joy my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds, for you know that the testing of your faith produces patience. And let patience have its full effect that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing.”
James says, “Count it all joy WHEN” not if.
We will go through problems, and the more we follow Jesus, the more Satan is going to attack us.
What is important for us to remember is that Satan has nothing on us. AT ALL.
Romans 8:37-39 says, “No, in all these things we are more than conquerors through Him who loved us. For I am sure that neither death nor life, nor angels nor rulers, nor things present nor things to come, nor powers, nor height nor depth, nor anything else in all creation will be able to separate us from the love of God in Christ Jesus our Lord.”
Satan is a fallen angel. In this list is angels. Therefore, Satan CANNOT separate us from God’s love.
I promise you that Satan will try to convince you that you are separate from it. He will try to convince you that you aren’t good enough for God’s love. I know this from personal experience.
I might burst some bubbles here, but we aren’t good enough for God’s love.
That should really come as a relief though. We could never be good enough for God’s love.
The best part is that we don’t have to be!
Ephesians 2:8-9 says, “For by grace you have been saved through faith. And this is not your own doing; it is the gift of God, not a result of works, so that no one may boast.”
We can’t “earn” God’s love. That isn’t how He set it up anyway.
God’s love for us is completely unconditional. Also in Ephesians 2, it talks about how God loved us even when we were sinners. Jesus has always loved us, and we don’t need to earn it.
This should come as an encouragement, because if we didn’t ever earn God’s love, then we can’t do anything to lose it. We can’t ever mess up bad enough that God won’t love us.
All that we have to do in our problems is turn to GOD!
I know that it sounds almost like a Christian cliche, but its the truth. Jesus is the one who died to release us from sin and defeat death and Satan all at once. Why should we turn to something else?
2 Corinthians 4:7-12, “But we have this treasure in jars of clay, to show that the surpassing power belongs to God and not to us. 8 We are afflicted in every way, but not crushed; perplexed, but not driven to despair; 9 persecuted, but not forsaken; struck down, but not destroyed; 10 always carrying in the body the death of Jesus, so that the life of Jesus may also be manifested in our bodies. 11 For we who live are always being given over to death for Jesus’ sake, so that the life of Jesus also may be manifested in our mortal flesh. 12 So death is at work in us, but life in you.”
These verses really sum up our walk with God. When we turn to God in our problems, we might be struck down, but we won’t be destroyed. Nothing can defeat us when we are in Christ.
In Psalms 4, David talks about how God has relieved him, and brought him more joy than the times of feasts.
He is still being chased when he says this, but he has found relief and joy in God.
I don’t know about you guys, but when I’m down, I want that joy from God, I want him to take my pain and problems, and turn my eyes back to Him.
So I ask you guys in closing here, where are your eyes? Are you looking to the quick fixes that distract you from your problems and from God, or are you looking to the God who takes away the distractions and gives you HIS joy in the difficult parts of life?
1 Peter 5:7, “casting all your cares on Him, because He cares for you.”