Psalms 37: It’s All in Your Mind (Heart & Soul)
People always ask me what they can “do” to get into God’s good graces. Physically, there is nothing that anyone can do, to make God love them. The irony is that even though you can’t do anything physical, the ball is still in your court. The key to having God as a close friend is to give Him your heart, warts and all.
In Psalms 37, David tells everyone how to have a relationship with God like the one he has. I know some of you have commented that while David may have a great friendship with God, you don’t. Well, here is how to do it.
Verse 1-7, David says not to worry about the “evil doer.” Don’t be jealous of what he has, because it is temporary. Instead, he says, trust in God and be faithful to Him. Be happy and content with the good things He has given you. Instead of focusing on the bad man, you should “delight in the Lord, and He will give you the desires of your heart.” Notice the little play on words here. He will give you the desires of your heart. Does that mean he will give you all your wants? NO! He will adjust your desires, so that they are always satisfied, same problem, different solution. God is cool isn’t he?
In verses 5-7, David says to set your eyes or commitment on the Lord. Trust that He will bring about a change in your character for the good. Good character stands out from others. Keep your eyes off “the other guy,” and wait patiently for God. He will act, but in His perfect time, not your faulty one.
Verses 8-10 tell us not to get angry with evil people, and worry about whether or not they will get away with what they are doing. God sees it and he is working things out. In addition, if you get upset about the deeds of evil doers, it will most likely end up with you sinning in response. Think about the wonderful place that Jesus is preparing for you instead. Think about how proud God will be that you “rose above” the anger to have peace with Him.
Verses 12-17 tell us that we should not kid ourselves about the wicked’s tactics. They only love themselves. They will fight and exploit everyone and everything, as they grasp through this life trying to get what they think they deserve here. They are only looking out for #1. It is better to be content with what little you have than to be like them. What they are seeking is just temporary, in the end they will lose it all. However, the “Lord upholds the righteous” and the wicked’s reign of terror will be broken. (V. 17)
God is not far off either. In verse 18-19, David says that God will supply your every need here as well. Many people may confuse need with want, and that gets them into trouble. If we look only for what we truly need, God will pleasantly surprise us by going Above & Beyond our expectations. God will use supernatural means to make sure we are cared for.
Not so much for the wicked (v. 20-22), they grub around, and take whatever they can get their hands on. They only have themselves to take care of them. You can see this in the difference between their behavior, and the demeanor of the righteous ones. Verse 21 tells us that the wicked borrow and don’t pay back, while the righteous man can give generously. The reason is that the wicked cannot give because their resources are limited, but the servant of God has God’s unlimited ability to provide at his disposal. As believers, we have the King’s treasure. The wicked do not have this blessing; therefore, we should never fail to trust God. Delight in Him. Verses 23-24 says if you do that, God will order your steps, pick you up when you fall, and hold your hand through all the trials of life.
In verses 25-26, David gives us a testimony, that he “has not seen the righteous forsaken, or his children begging for bread.” God gives with a generous heart to His people who are a blessing to others. Verse 27 says, “Therefore, we should turn from evil and do good,” why? Well, the rest of the Psalm lists the benefits for doing that (v.27-40). Here are a few:
- You will live forever in inherited land (v.28)
- You will speak wisdom and be fair (v.30)
- While the wicked may plot against you, God will put His law in your heart, so you do not slip up.(v. 32-34)
- You will be a man of peace (v. 35-37)
- God will save you from the wicked and help you because you trust in Him (v. 38-40)
When you start to think that this world is unfair and that God isn’t there, remember, it’s all in your mind. Give it to Him.