Psalm 73 is a wisdom psalm. The psalmist struggled to understand why the wicked prosper, and he was envious of them (vv. 2-3). They were saying that God didn’t even take knowledge of him; that He didn’t care about him (v. 11). His efforts to live a pure life seemed futile because all the while he himself was suffering (vv. 13-14). It was not until he finally sought God for answers that he came to understand the fearful destiny of the wicked in complete destruction (vv. 17-19). With a convicted and penitent heart, he then realized that he should never have complained and questioned God (vv. 21-22). He knew that God had always been there for him and would ultimately bring him to glory (vv. 23-24).
It is here that the psalmist exclaimed: “Whom have I in heaven but You? And there is none upon earth that I desire besides You. My flesh and my heart fail; But God is the strength of my heart and my portion forever” (vv. 25-26).
These days are especially troubling. It is stressful, frightening, and difficult. In such times we often react out of fear, anger, and frustration. Some do a lot of finger pointing and complaining. Others exploit such times to promote their own agenda or for their own profit, wreaking havoc, violence and destruction. These things lead to division, fighting and much harm. According to James 3:13-18, wisdom teaches us differently.
Wisdom is seen in how we conduct ourselves (vv. 13-14). It calls for good behavior characterized by meekness. Meekness is not weakness but acting with gentleness and self-control. It calls for humility. Selfish envy and pride are contrary to the truth. Wisdom is more than words. It is who we are and how we live our lives.
How is a person to navigate through life with all its challenges? There are so many decisions, changes, problems and questions. Who? What? When? Where? How? Why?
None of us has all the answers. You can read a lot of books and still not know what to do. Some just let life take them down whatever path it leads them. Others have their own mind about what they want and where they’re going.
But the Bible teaches us to let God be the navigator of our lives if we want to be truly blessed. This is the wisdom of Proverbs 3:5-7. Here we learn how to let God navigate life for us.
I recently met Jeff at a Gospel Meeting. Because he committed adultery, his wife divorced him. He went into a great depression and started drinking. In time, he found himself in a dump of a hotel room with nothing left to his name but four beers in the refrigerator. That was all he wanted because it was the only thing that helped him forget everything.
Robert Dodson is the Preaching Minister for the Northwest Church of Christ.
6059 Azle Avenue
Fort Worth, TX 76135