Picking Daisies

Bible Reading: Psalm 107; 116; 118; 125
Listen to Psalm 107
Listen to Psalm 116
Listen to Psalm 118
Listen to Psalm 125

"Whoever is wise, let him heed these things and consider the great love of the Lord" (107:43).

The psalmist tells us to consider the great love of the Lord when we remember times of oppression, calamity and rebellion, as well as times of rescue, healing and abundance. The Lord stirs up the waves and stills the storm; he turns rivers into deserts and deserts into rivers; he makes families increase and decrease; he plants and uproots; he humbles and lifts up (107:25-43). "God has given all people over to their stubborn ways so that he can show mercy to all" (Rom. 11:32 NCV). Having fixated his eyes on us as the "focus of his love" (Eph.1:4 Msg), he uses good and bad times alike to turn our focus upward to return his gaze.

It's easy to consider God's great love when life is easy, but when we suffer hardship or failure, we tend to consider IF God loves us. We pick apart our circumstances and our performance like picking petals off a daisy, concluding day to day, "He loves me. He loves me not...." But when we grasp the magnitude of God's demonstration of love for us, in that "while we were still sinners, Christ died for us" (Rom. 5:8) -- when we come to rest in the joy of knowing that "NOTHING will ever be able to separate us from the love of God demonstrated by our Lord Jesus Christ when he died for us" (Rom. 8:39 LB) -- THEN we will count off ALL our days, "He loves me. He loves me. He loves me...."

When we wake each morning, secure in his love and saturated with the awareness of his grace, we will "give thanks to the Lord, for he is good" (107:1; 118:1, 29). Whatever the forecast -- sunshine or rain, loss or gain, pleasure or pain -- we will say, "This is the day the Lord has made; let us rejoice and be glad in it" (118:24).

When our joy and courage melts away as we struggle through the day, we will cry out to the Lord for mercy and deliverance (107:6, 13, 19, 26, 28; 116:1, 4). We will be assured that, like "mountains on every side, so the Lord surrounds and protects his people, both now and forever" (125:2 CEV/NLT). The whisper within will remain, "The Lord is with me; I will not be afraid. What can man do to me? The Lord is with me; he is my helper" (118:6-7).

When we lift our voices in prayer, we will "give thanks to the Lord for his unfailing love and his wonderful deeds for men" (107:8, 15, 21, 31). Our praise will ring forth: "I was pushed back and about to fall, but the Lord helped me. The Lord is my strength and my song; he has become my salvation.... The Lord's right hand has done mighty things!" (118:13-15).

As we reflect on God's love at the end of the day, we will whisper, through smiles or through tears, "The Lord has done this, and it is marvelous in our eyes.... Be at rest once more, O my soul, for the Lord has been good to you" (118:23; 116:7).

As we "heed these things and consider the great love of the Lord" (107:43), may we know, deep within our souls, that "the Lord is gracious and righteous; our God is full of compassion" (116:3-7). "His love endures forever" (107:1; 118:1-4, 29). He loves me! He loves me! He loves me!