“His pleasure is not in the strength of the horse,
nor his delight in the legs of the warrior;
the Lord delights in those who fear him,
who put their hope in his unfailing love.” –Psalm 147:10-11, NIV
I’m so proud of me! Yesterday I went to our local home improvement store all by myself with Seth, my youngest son. I picked out paint and brushes and hardware and everything else that Mike and my dad told me I’d need to refurbish my kitchen cabinets. I’m a do-it-yourself-er now! Next time I walk into that store, they’ll treat me with respect instead of like someone who must have gotten lost and wandered in by mistake.
I’m only kidding. I know very well that my kitchen project isn’t going anywhere without the help of my son, designated contractor on the project, and the advice of my husband and dad. I’m just the visionary and assistant. I even needed help at the home improvement store. Did you know you can’t just grab a can of paint off the shelf like you do a box of cereal at the grocery store?
But don’t we like to believe we’re self-reliant? From the time we’re toddlers, we’re trying to prove we can do things by ourselves. Our parents found this amusing when they weren’t impatient or exasperated.
God knows us better than we know ourselves. He knows exactly what we can and can’t do. He doesn’t expect us to prove our worth to Him. Rather, He wants us to recognize His worth. We honor Him when we place our confidence in Him.
Psalm 147:10 names a few things we’re tempted to rely on other than God: the strength of other things that we allow to carry us and ourselves. On the day that I read this verse, I stumbled across reference after reference to people and things we often choose to depend on: spouse, extended family, friends, money, belongings, addictions, complaints.
Complaints? Yes. Sometimes in our desperation, we complain about our situation, hoping that someone will hear of our plight and rescue us. When we do this, we’re putting our confidence in our own words to force desired change. Maybe this is why Philippians 2:14 commands us to “do everything without complaining and arguing” (NLT).
I’m not saying that we should sit back and do nothing, waiting for change to occur. When there is work to be done, we must do our part. We must do so, however, with an awareness of the One Who is really in charge, our Source of strength and wisdom, our Guide, our Provider, our Teacher, our Lord. He’s the Visionary and the Contractor. We’re just the assistants who do as we’re told, trusting in our God’s unfailing love.
Father, help us to place and keep our trust in You for all we need. If ever we’re tempted to rely on someone or something else, please make us aware of what we’re doing. We realize it’s good for us to do what we can, whatever You’ve enabled us to do. It’s also good for us to ask for help when we need it from the people You’ve placed in our lives. Ultimately, however, our confidence must remain in You, the One Who loves us fully and is able to give us everything we’ll ever need. Thank You, Lord! Amen.