March 7, 2018

Psalm 107:17-22 … “Some were sick through their sinful ways, and because of their iniquities endured affliction; they loathed any kind of food, and they drew near to the gates of death.” vss. 17-18

The psalmist was a realist. As he looked at his people’s history and saw the way so many suffered, it was obvious that they were reaping the consequences of their careless decisions. That continues to be the way it is for so many. We simply can’t make selfish and self-serving choices without ending up in sad shape. And sometimes there’s no going back. One poor choice leads to another and circumstances get worse instead of better. It’s no accident that our downward cycles are called “slippery slopes.” Once we start sliding, it’s tough to get back on our feet again—and we’ve got no one to blame but ourselves. Of course, not all suffering is like this. Many times people can make all the right choices and still end up in a bad way. Such is the nature of life in this world. But the psalmist was, at heart, an optimist. Because God is good and full of steadfast love, there is hope even for those who have slid all the way to the bottom. There is power in faith, and as we learn to surrender our lives to God, there can be miraculous turnarounds. We’ve all heard the stories. They happen not because of our own strength and resolve, but by God’s grace and the power of the Spirit. And always, our thanks is properly directed to God.

Thought for the Day: How do poor choices get magnified?