Showing items filed under “Marc Stern”


“As a deer pants for flowing streams, so pants my soul for you, O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When shall I come and appear before God?” Psalms 42:1-2 ESV

As I read Psalms 42:1,  I immediately think of a song I use to sing as a child.  “As the deer panteth for the water so my soul longeth after thee.  You alone are my heart’s desire and I long to worship thee...”.  I can see the picture the psalmist paints of a deer panting, taking quick short breaths.  Maybe standing, looking left and right for streams of water.  Maybe the panting implies that he is tired from running or maybe the deer is just desperate because he has gone too long without water.

Regardless, he uses this vivid picture to describe how he longs for God.  He thirsts for Him.  The need for water is one of the strongest physical needs we have.  You can go weeks with food, but in most cases you won’t last more than three or four days without water.  His soul longs for Him.  It’s more than a feeling he is after.  It’s more than some chill bumps on his arm that he craves.  He WANTS the living God!  

"When shall I come and appear before God?”  He is not afraid to come before Him.  There is a fundamental need or desire that can only be fulfilled in God’s presence.  I can’t see him settling for anything but the presence of God in his life.  He is desperate for Him.  Which brings me to a question.  What picture would I paint RIGHT NOW that would accurately depict my appetite or desire for God? 

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“And we know that for those who love God all things work together for good, for those who are called according to his purpose.”

Romans 8:28 ESV

A very familiar verse, one that many believers quote often, but do we really KNOW that “ALL things work together for good.” Knowing surpasses what we feel. A “knowing” based on the Truth of God’s Word is more stable and consistent than any feeling. Knowing will anchor us when what we see and feel and hear makes us shaky and afraid and fills us with doubt.

At any moment in our life there are two worlds converging and interacting...the world we see and the one we don’t. God’s promise to us is that when storms and trials and turmoil break loose in our life, there is something so much more glorious working behind the scenes. Working for His glory, for His purpose, and on the behalf of those who love Him. What you see is temporary and subject to change, but behind the scenes His glory awaits to be seen. Like the sun rise waiting for it’s time to shine, God’s glory waits for just the right time to come forth. 

It doesn’t mean that the “things” that we go through won’t hurt or be painful, but it does mean when it’s all said and done it will be “good”. I have the picture in my head of a mother cooking dinner, and she is taking her spoon and dipping it in the pot.  She looks to the impatient, frustrated, hungry child and says, “it’s almost ready, I just need to add one more thing.”

If what you are experiencing is bitter and doesn’t taste good, just wait, God is not done yet. Something is missing...HIS GLORY...HIS UNSEEN PURPOSE...!!!!  So, it’s ok.  Be frustrated for a season. Endure the fear and doubt, but just KNOW “for those who love God, all things work together for good...”.

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