By Reverend Mark Hunnemann
A psalm of Asaph.
1 Surely God is good to Israel, to those who are pure in heart.
2 But as for me, my feet had almost slipped; I had nearly lost my foothold.
3 For I envied the arrogant when I saw the prosperity of the wicked.
4 They have no struggles; their bodies are healthy and strong.
5 They are free from common human burdens; they are not plagued by human ills.
6 Therefore pride is their necklace; they clothe themselves with violence.
7 From their callous hearts comes iniquity; their evil imaginations have no limits.
8 They scoff, and speak with malice; with arrogance they threaten oppression.
9 Their mouths lay claim to heaven, and their tongues take possession of the earth.
10 Therefore their people turn to them and drink up waters in abundance.
11 They say, "How would God know? Does the Most High know anything?"
12 This is what the wicked are like-always free of care, they go on amassing wealth.
13 Surely in vain I have kept my heart pure and have washed my hands in innocence.
14 All day long I have been afflicted, and every morning brings new punishments.
15 If I had spoken out like that, I would have betrayed your children.
16 When I tried to understand all this, it troubled me deeply
17 till I entered the sanctuary of God; then I understood their final destiny.
18 Surely you place them on slippery ground; you cast them down to ruin.
19 How suddenly are they destroyed, completely swept away by terrors!
20 They are like a dream when one awakes; when you arise, Lord, you will despise them as fantasies.
21 When my heart was grieved and my spirit embittered,
22 I was senseless and ignorant; I was a brute beast before you.
23 Yet I am always with you; you hold me by my right hand.
24 You guide me with your counsel, and afterward you will take me into glory.
25 Whom have I in heaven but you? And earth has nothing I desire besides you.
26 My flesh and my heart may fail, but God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever.
27 Those who are far from you will perish; you destroy all who are unfaithful to you.
28 But as for me, it is good to be near God. I have made the Sovereign Lord my refuge; I will tell of all your deeds.
This may seem like an odd topic, but I have observed that frequently our grousing on Facebook (or any public forum) breaks a cardinal principle of Scripture. One person (who shall remain anonymous) has a powerful ministry within the paranormal community...he is a godly and very experienced and competent man. However, every other month he "quits" publicly on FB, citing all kinds of issues and complaints. A day or two later, he is back on as if nothing had happened. But something HAD happened--he had dishonored God and caused people to stumble.
I chose Psalm 73 because the psalmist gives full vent to deep discouragement--he holds nothing back. In doing so, he gives us an inspired model of how to complain to God. The Lord knows our feelings--and feelings are feelings are feelings. They often come upon us unbidden, especially when we are discouraged. I have long believed that discouragement is Satan's most often used weapon in large arsenal. Face it, we DO get or feel discouraged at times--all of us. I certainly do.
Please note verse 15, "If I had said, 'I will speak thus', I would have betrayed the generation of your children." In other words, the psalmist realized that if he PUBLICLY gave full vent to how he was feeling, then he was certain to cause others to stumble. Please don't misunderstand me--we are invited to be brutally honest with the Lord regarding our struggles. And it is often encouraging to read that others struggle too...we are not alone. But, when it gets really bad, then we must exercise caution in what we say in public. Have you ever said anything on FB and later wished you hadn't?
We give the devil a royal boost when we "let it rip" in public, because the folks who read it may be scandalized, confused, or who knows what else. It seems that, for some folks, Facebook has become a public confessional of their problems and discouragement.
I wish we had the time to go through the entire psalm, but the realization that he was responsible for how his venting affected others, was a key turning point--along with a fresh perspective of the dual destinies of mankind.This is another scheme of Satan that we must avoid for the glory of God, and the welfare of others.Please think before you say something, especially in public. God bless you...
"Seeing Ghosts through God's Eyes" (also in a Kindle edition)...please consider purchasing my book which uses science, logic, and the bible to analyze the true source of power behind paranormal activity.