Blake Allen, Young Adult and Student Pastor, LHBC

Psalm 94:16-22
16 Who will rise up for me against the wicked? Who will take a stand for me against evildoers? 17 Unless the Lord had given me help, I would soon have dwelt in the silence of death. 18 When I said, “My foot is slipping,” your unfailing love, Lord, supported me. 19 When anxiety was great within me, your consolation brought me joy. 20 Can a corrupt throne be allied with you—a throne that brings on misery by its decrees? 21 The wicked band together against the righteous and condemn the innocent to death. 22 But the Lord has become my fortress, and my God the rock in whom I take refuge. .”

With all the bad news in this world it’s easy to forget there is good news. When you turn on the news or scroll through social media, it is overwhelmingly negative. Bad news seems to drown out the good news in the world. Add to this the personal struggles we endure and we are left with a recipe of disaster. With all the negativity put in front of our eyes, our minds have been trained to forget there is good news. 

In Psalm 94, the Psalmist finds himself in a culture swamped with bad news. He looks out into his world and sees widows and orphans being murdered, his enemies saying God is not present, the poor not taken care of, God’s people being crushed, and he finds himself in a culture that is hostile to God and his followers. Sound familiar? 

But when faced with adversity, the Psalmist responds in a unique way. He doesn’t question the existence of God or blame Him for all that is happening. Instead, he responds in worship. He believes God is present and He will reign down His justice. He recognizes God is a conquering God who is a mighty fortress. He reflects upon the things God previously accomplished which leads him to the belief that God will also claim the victory over his current circumstances. Even if he felt he was overwhelmed or overtaken by the weight of his circumstances he recognized God would be his comfort and strength. 

Notice the Psalmist did not minimize his struggles though. We can’t just ignore our circumstances or pretend like our burdens don’t exist. But we serve a God who is greater than our circumstances. So, don’t minimize your struggles, but maximize your praise! For our God is worthy of worship. So, today, choose prayer over anxiety! Choose faith over unbelief! Proclaim victory over adversity! For we are victorious in Christ Jesus our Lord. Are you maximizing your praise?

Sometimes we forget there is good news because it is easier to dwell on the negative. We must train our mind to reflect on all the good God has done in our life. For God has always been faithful. There is good news for us today: God has overcome the world by sending His one and only son, Jesus, to die for the sins of the world. He came to restore the brokenness that exists and reconcile all things to himself. He is moving all of creation in the direction of His ultimate plan of restoration. And those who put their faith and trust in Jesus will experience the blessings of salvation. 

The bad news can never outweigh the good news of the Gospel. For there is always hope in Jesus Christ. And for that reason alone, we have a reason to maximize our praise. 

Heavenly Father, remind us you are a faithful God who has always fulfilled your promises. You are worthy of our worship and praise. Strengthen and comfort us in our seasons of despair. And may you be highly lifted up in our lives. In Jesus name, Amen. 

Psalm 4:8- In peace I will both lie down and sleep;
    for you alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety.