In our Sunday School class this past week, we continued studying the promises of God. This has been a great blessing to me and I hope it has been to you as well. We studied “God’s promise of Provision” with Psalm 34:4-14. I would encourage you to review this passage of Scripture as a part of your quiet time over the next few days.
While thinking about “the good life”, we may think of being happy, financially stable, family and friends abundant, and just things going good. As we study Psalm 34, we see that David begins with praise to God, and he invites us to join in shouting out the goodness of God. Verses 4-7 show us why God’s greatness was on his mind. Whatever the needs that David had at that moment, God was there and meeting every need. “I sought the Lord and he heard me” v.4 David was in a situation that was beyond his control. The Philistine King was after him. “…The Lord heard him and saved him from all his troubles.” v.6 Have you ever been in a situation that was beyond your control? Did you see God in the midst of the circumstances working and bringing it all together? or Did you find yourself saying, “whew… I was lucky.” or “this person saved the day.” David recognized the presence of God in his circumstances, and guiding him to the place of safety. (Romans 8:28)
“God does not just provide for our needs; He provides Himself.” “The Lord encamps around those who fear Him…” v.7
In God alone, we find all good things, and are satisfied with all He offers. Contentment has been chased after since Adam and Eve were placed in the Garden of Eden. Adam and Eve wanted to put their own agenda, and have their own way. This led them to sin against God and cast their lives into turmoil. Peace and contentment had reigned, now discouragement and upheaval had taken over until they repented and were made right with God. By staying true to God and His Word, we can find our peace and contentment in God alone.
“O, taste and see that the Lord is good.” v. 8 We need to seek after God with our whole heart looking to Him for joy in this life. When we are in a right relationship with God, we experience his goodness and “not lack for anything” v. 10 The age old question was brought up. Why do bad things happen to good people? I do not claim to be an expert on this question by any means, but my opinion is this. We live in a broken world. It has been broken by sin, back in the Garden of Eden. God gave Adam and Eve a free will. He made them in His image so they would be able to choose to love God the way that He loved them. Did they choose to disobey God? yes. We have the same makeup as they have. We are made in God’s image. We can choose to follow God, or we can choose the path that leads to sin. Every person has that choice. We cannot choose for someone else. When our contentment in not in God alone, we begin to search in other areas to fill that place inside. Have you seen someone look and try so many things, and then get deeper in the hole they have dug for themselves? When we choose to follow God, we experience joy and peace. We become a partner with God in this Christian Life. The choice is up to us.
Our next section of Scripture is v.11-14. “Come, children, listen to me: I will teach you the fear of the Lord.” God gives us three things to do in these verses. 1. Keep your tongue from evil. v.13. 2. Turn away from evil and do good. 3. Seek peace and pursue it. v.14. When was the last time, you just sat at the feet of Jesus to be taught by him. As we pray and seek his face, don’t just spout off your needs and say “see ya later”. Take time to sit quietly and let the Holy Spirit speak to you. I know this can be a challenge at this time in your life, but let me assure you, Christians struggle with this at all stages of life. Ask anyone and they will tell you, “I am just so busy.” In all the busyness of life, we need to take time to talk and listen to God. We need to fight for our daily time with God. Get in his Word and let Him teach you the things that will get you through the toughest days. The devil wants nothing more than seeing you defeated, discouraged, and chasing your life. The devil will have a hard time bringing you to your knees if you are already there in prayer.
Being under God’s care and provision is the best place you can be. Trust your Heavenly Father to know what is best–Now that is the Good Life!
*This is a summary of a Sunday School lesson is based on “Bible Studies for Life” printed by Lifeway Christian Resources. While The main points and focus questions are printed in our Sunday School curriculum. The Commentary on them is based on personal experience and lessons learned from my own life. This is offered to my SS Class members who are unable to be with us due to work or health issues. Thank you.