The online Bible teaching ministry of Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
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Message Summary: Whenever our heart is overwhelmed let us make this ancient request of the Psalmist our personal plea: "Lead me to the rock that is higher than I."
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"Hear my cry, O God; attend to my prayer. From the end of the earth I will cry to You, when my heart is overwhelmed; lead me to the rock that is higher than I" (Psalm 61:1,2).
How firm a foundation, ye saints of the Lord,
Is laid for your faith in His excellent Word!
What more can He say than to you He hath said,
You, who unto Jesus for refuge have fled?
Many of you can recall a situation in your life when your heart was overwhelmed or perhaps you are presently feeling overwhelmed by matters pressing in on you.
The state of the country and this election has a lot of people overwhelmed. We don't think we are the only ones who say, "Has it really come to this??"
We may be overwhelmed at the rate of social decay, as we navigate, seeking to stay faithful to God and His Word through an ever-changing culture, one where we are confronted with once unheard of laws and policies. It seems we are seeing mankind's rebellion against God growing at a fevered pitch and experiencing the inevitable consequences.
Today let us receive a word of assurance from an ancient Psalm written some 3,000 years ago.
As we consider today's text there's no evidence that David traveled any considerable distance from where he lived. Of course travel in ancient times was very difficult and only a tiny few traveled beyond their own relatively close geographic area. Yet in a powerful expression of faith David declares, "From the end of the earth I will cry to You."
"When my heart is overwhelmed." Although we don't know precisely what David was being overwhelmed with we surely can identify. Another version states, "as my heart grows faint". Such emotions can leave us feeling helpless, heavy-hearted, fearful and indecisive in what to do about the matter at hand whether it's a personal matter or the state of affairs in our world.
Times like this have occurred in both our personal life and in our ministry to others. In fact due to the nature of our chaplaincy ministry together we rarely have a day of visitation when we don't encounter people who express being overwhelmed with a particular matter in their life. And quite realistically we are aware times of being overwhelmed will continue to be a part of our experience on this side of eternity.
David's specific petition when he was overwhelmed is a fitting petition for followers of God in each generation, "Lead me to the rock that is higher than I."
In the Scriptures the rock is a common metaphor for God. The first reference to the Rock in this sense was in Jacob's blessing to Joseph when he refers to "the Shepherd, the Rock of Israel" (Genesis 49:24). In Moses’ final sermon to the Israelites before he died he declared: "He is the Rock, His works are perfect, and all His ways are just. A faithful God who does no wrong, upright and just is He" (Deuteronomy 32:4).
At her son Samuel's dedication Hannah prayed, “There is no one holy like the Lord; there is no one besides you; there is no Rock like our God" (2 Samuel 2:2).
All throughout the Psalms the Rock is commonly used in this way to describe the power and stability we have in the Lord. One wonderful example is Psalm 18:31, "For who is God besides the LORD? And who is the Rock except our God?" The prophets continue the theme: "Trust in the LORD forever, for the LORD, the LORD, is the Rock eternal" (Isaiah 26:4).
Upon Peter's confession of faith Christ stated, "upon this rock I will build my church" (Matthew 16:18). The apostle Paul describes the spiritual rock that accompanied the children of Israel, "and that Rock was Christ" (1 Corinthians 10:4). Peter wrote, "Come to Christ, who is the living Foundation of Rock upon which God builds" (1 Peter 2:4).
For many years I have appreciated a powerful truth expressed in this statement by Handley Carr Glyn Moule, a theologian who lived from 1841-1920. "There is no situation so chaotic that God cannot, from that situation, create something that is surpassingly good. He did it at the creation. He did it at the cross. He is doing it today."
Whenever our heart is overwhelmed let us make this ancient request of the Psalmist our personal plea: "Lead me to the rock that is higher than I."
Be encouraged today,
Stephen & Brooksyne Weber
Daily prayer: Lord today, like the Psalmist, I cry out to You. Hear my cry, O God; attend to my prayer. I join all who call out to you from the ends of the earth. I am so thankful that You hear me regardless of where I may be crying out from or what situation I am in. At times my heart does grow faint and I am overwhelmed. I ask you to lead me to the Rock that is higher than I. Help me to rest today in the assurance that on Christ the solid rock I stand, all other ground is sinking sand.
Today's Suggested Music and Supplemental Resources
"In Christ Alone/The Solid Rock" Video Travis Cottrell
"Rock Of Ages" Video Antrim Mennonite Choir
"Lead Me To The Rock" Video Integrity Music
"Lead Me To The Rock That Is Higher Than I" Video Maranatha Singers
"Psalm 61" Video Matthew Ward
"Hosanna" Video Paul Baloche
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Scripture references are from The Holy Bible: New International Version. © 1984 by International Bible Society; NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE®, Copyright © 1995 by The Lockman Foundation, New King James Version (NKJV) Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson, Inc. and the King James Version.
Personal Mission Statement: "I am created by God to bring Him glory. Through God's Son Jesus Christ I have been redeemed and make it my life's goal to please the Lord. My mission in life is to honor God through my faith and obedience and prepare myself and all whom I may influence for eternity."
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