retreat2018

Friday, 13 October 2017 16:57

Don’t Stay Up Late!

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Are you a late-night person or early riser? The Bible says, “It is vain for you to rise up early, to sit up late.” Ps. 127:2 Does this mean you are a bad person if you stay up late or rise early? Obviously, there is more to this verse than the surface meaning.

Many people who rise early or stay up late use the time to study, pray, and grow in their relationship with God/Jesus. So, we can’t throw stones at those people as if they had sinned. What is the application?

Several thoughts come to mind. First, the Psalmist encourages us to keep work in perspective. In fact, he states this truth in Psalm 127. “Unless the Lord builds the house, they labor in vain who build it.” (Vs. 1) The Psalmist knew that success is in God’s hands.

Our obsession with work will not hasten what only God can give. Success is in the hands of the Lord. A person can be driven to get ahead, to force success, and make things happen. This can happen in the church. Churches can be driven toward success and use any means to attain it. Churches can be driven toward success and drive their members to attain it.

This discussion doesn’t negate hard work. The writer of Proverbs applauds the ant for his hard work. “Go to the ant, thou sluggard; consider her ways, and be wise.” (Prov. 6:6) This verse challenges the ways of the lazy person.

Psalm 127:2 is about perspective. We shouldn’t allow ourselves to get trapped in the mindset that we can cause anything to happen. Hard work is good. However, our perspective should be to work hard and leave the results with God.

There are many pastors who have labored tirelessly for years and seen little results for their labors. The important lesson is that they have been faithful. They have done their best.

This leads to the main lesson of Psalm 127:2, trust. God, in His sovereignty, determines success and the conditions under which it is delivered. In light of this truth, what should be our response and our perspective?

Perspective - When we trust God we should rest our heads at night, knowing God is steering the ship. If we have done all we know to do then the outcome is in His hands. Paul said, “Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made know to God; and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.” (Phil. 4:6-7)

Perspective - When we trust God it should calm our emotions. All of us have been guilty of impatience, irritation, and frustration with people. If God is steering the ship our temperaments should be yielded to His authority, knowing He is in control.

God has something wonderful in store for us. Let’s pray that His perspective pervades our lives.

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