Read Psalm 30
A psalm. A song. For the dedication of the temple. Of David.
1 I will exalt you, Lord,
for you lifted me out of the depths
and did not let my enemies gloat over me.
2 Lord my God, I called to you for help,
and you healed me.
3 You, Lord, brought me up from the realm of the dead;
you spared me from going down to the pit.
4 Sing the praises of the Lord, you his faithful people;
praise his holy name.
5 For his anger lasts only a moment,
but his favor lasts a lifetime;
weeping may stay for the night,
but rejoicing comes in the morning.
6 When I felt secure, I said,
“I will never be shaken.”
7 Lord, when you favored me,
you made my royal mountain stand firm;
but when you hid your face,
I was dismayed.
8 To you, Lord, I called;
to the Lord I cried for mercy:
9 “What is gained if I am silenced,
if I go down to the pit?
Will the dust praise you?
Will it proclaim your faithfulness?
10 Hear, Lord, and be merciful to me;
Lord, be my help.”
11 You turned my wailing into dancing;
you removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy,
12 that my heart may sing your praises and not be silent.
Lord my God, I will praise you forever.
In Isaiah 55:8-9, the Prophet Isaiah writes, “For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
neither are your ways my ways,” declares the Lord. “As the heavens are higher than the earth, so are my ways higher than your ways and my thoughts than your thoughts.” The ways of the Lord are completely different from our ways. He operates in ways our brains can’t fathom.
We see this with great clarity in Psalm 30:5. David says the Lord’s anger lasts only a moment, but His favor lasts a lifetime. We tend to operate in opposite ways. Our joy/compassion/empathy (fill in the blank with your emotion of choice) lasts for a moment, but our anger tends to linger on. When one of our kids does something great, we celebrate for a minute and then focus on the ways they fall short. We rejoice in the five compliments we get from our boss for a few moments, and then focus on the one critique. We forget the ways our Life Group members showed kindness, and instead dwell on all the ways they annoy us.
David writes as one who knows what it’s like to evoke the anger of the Lord. Even though he was a man after God’s own heart, the Lord is well-acquainted with all of his shortcomings. David was unfaithful, murdered an innocent man, passively led his family at times, and much more. Yet David can say with integrity that the ongoing favor of the Lord is much greater than His momentary anger.
As followers of Jesus Christ, we want to be the same way. We need to believe this Truth and live it out. Today, pray that God would help you believe Psalm 30:5, that the Lord is not angry with you, but shows you favor, not because of anything you have done, but because of the finished work of the Son. And then see how you can apply this principle in the way you love and lead others—momentary anger, ongoing joy.
- How do you tend to operate—as one with ongoing anger and momentary joy, or ongoing joy and momentary anger?
- It’s easy to focus on the mourning and sadness in life. How would your life look different if you believed that joy and dancing will come in the morning?
- Not a question but a challenge: Take a few moments to thank the Lord that He removed your sackcloth and replaced it with joy!