Worth Reading–January 11, 2012
Here’s another great prayer from Scotty Smith.
A Prayer for Reaffirming the Reasons We Revere and Love God
By Scotty Smith
Then Satan answered the Lord and said, “Does Job fear God for no reason? Job 1:9
There are many who say, “Who will show us some good? Lift up the light of your face upon us, O Lord!” You have put more joy in my heart than they have when their grain and wine abound. In peace I will both lie down and sleep; for you alone, O Lord, make me dwell in safety. Ps. 4:6-8
Heavenly Father, it’s not just Job who is tempted to measure your goodness by the good gifts you give us and the pleasant ways you treat us. We too are targets of the same Satanic whispering, theological distortion and consumer driven notion. But today we reject Satan’s assumption that the only reason we love you is because you buy our affections with “the good life” (Job 1:9-11).
We don’t revere and love you simply because you make us happy; for you love us too much to simply cater to our whims or give into our whines. Because the gospel is true, nothing has to change for us to trust and love you, and experience your peace and joy, nothing—neither people nor circumstances, nor our health or finances.
You’re not our 24/7 convenience store, nor our benevolent butler in the sky. You’re not a Genie granting wishes nor a computer waiting to be programmed by us. Your name is Abba Father, not Sugar Daddy, and we are so very thankful. We exist for your glory. You don’t exist for our pleasure.
We love you because you bought us back—you redeemed our lives from sin and death by the perfect life of Jesus. We love you because you first loved us and gave Jesus as a sacrifice of atonement and propitiation for our sins. We enjoy and thank you for the many creature comforts you give us, but we love you in response to your great love lavished on us in the gospel.
Though many are asking, “Who can show us any good? Where is your God now? How can you say God is good? Where was your God when . . . ? How could your God possibly . . . ? Why doesn’t your God . . . ?” yet, Lord, we will lie down and sleep in peace, for you alone, O Lord, make us dwell in safety. Anyplace where you are is safe. It is safer to be with you in a place of suffering and hardship, than without you in a paradise of carnal pleasures and pain-free living.
Indeed, Father, there’s no safer place to be—in life or in death—than in Christ. Because you’ve hidden our lives in Jesus, not a hair can fall from our heads, not a breath can be taken from our lungs, and not a beat can be missed by our hearts apart from your sovereign purposes and pleasure. And should we die in the next hour, our hearts will forever proclaim, “Our God has done all things well.” So very Amen we pray, with great gratitude and trust, in Jesus’ most worthy name.