Daily Devotional

Psalms 34:6-7

"This poor man cried, and the Lord heard him and saved him out of all his troubles.  The angel of the Lord encamps
around those who fear him, and delivers them."

Psalms 34 is one of the first passages I memorized as a new believer.  I kind of claimed it because it was the number on my uniform in college basketball.  Not that I caused that number to be distinguished at all.  But I am a kind of number guy.  Lynn makes fun of me when I talk about numbers.  She says that I can remember numbers, but have a hard time remembering people, or even recent events.  She is right.  I have always been this way.

Actually, memorization of anything is not a strong suit for me.  I am much more an analysis guy.  In school I wondered why we had to memorize everything, when I could just use my book and read it!  It did not make a lot of sense to me, though I understand that reasoning better now.

Over four years ago I started memorizing a carefully selected verse or two before going to bed.  This would get my mind in the right place before bed. Then it would also give me a means of thinking and praying when awakening in the middle of the night, rather than on some of the gloomy and weird stuff that seems to happen automatically.

The above verses were my bedtime memory verses about three weeks ago.  They helped me a lot.  The next day I wrote up some thoughts to remind me of the good blessing I received that night, in hopes of cementing it all in place.  I wrote the following thoughts that morning in my journal.  I offer these to you.  Perhaps they will be of benefit.

I was greatly helped by these verses last night.  I identified with being a poor man, not coming to the Lord in riches or power.  As a poor man, I need help.  All the time.  It causes me to cry out to the Lord.  I have no power or resources of my own.  My only hope is seeking what I need from another source than myself.

Being this poor, needy man puts me outside striving.  So, I can relax.  The means are not my own.  My strength is not sufficient.  So, I don’t have to try to measure up.  I can only cry out, and wait.

Under these circumstances the Lord hears me.  He is my Savior.  He is my Lord.  He is my provider, even my protector.  He responds.  He saves me out of my troubles.
In myself, being poor is my continuous state.  However, in Christ I am rich.  But this requires daily dependence, daily crying out, daily letting my soul wait on the Lord, daily living by faith, but also daily seeing the Lord save and deliver and provide.  Daily rejoicing in Him.  Daily experiencing again His steadfast love poured over me.  Being poor like this is a blessed state!

Thus, looking to Christ in my on-going poverty, praying in the fear of the Lord, He surrounds me.  I am comforted that I am no longer poor, needy and alone.  The Lord encamps all around me.  Surrounds me (Ps. 32:10).  In Him, then, I rest.  I am at peace.  Moreover, in faith in Jesus, I fully expect kingdom success and fruitfulness.  In Him I have LIFE!!
English Standard Version (ESV) The Holy Bible, English Standard Version. ESV® Text Edition: 2016. Copyright © 2001 by Crossway Bibles, a publishing ministry of Good News Publishers.