Benefits of Brine

Psalm 128:1 “How blessed is everyone who fears the Lord, who walks in His ways.”

Observation: The psalmist wrote of the fear of the Lord as something to be sought, something that is a source of blessing. This specific idea is a frequent theme of Scripture, common enough that it’s possible to simply skim over the phrase in a religious spirit and never stop to consider how profoundly alien a concept it is. The suggestion is that we ought to actually seek to fear God. Imagine!

Application: Everything within me is wired to resist fear. To seek to fear God is counterintuitive precisely because fear usually connotes an altogether different meaning. I shun dark passages where danger might be lurking. I dread finding myself in unfamiliar circumstances with no clear idea how to proceed. I shrink from the thought of being out of control, facing destructive habits or life patterns. The thought of dying can strike the heart cold.

Yet the Word tells me that there is a fear to be desired, a fear to be sought as passionately as a man dying of thirst under the hot sun seeks the reprieve of shade and a cool drink. To be blessed is the cry of the human heart, one that God built into me from the moment He first considered me. My heart longs for the Father’s blessing, to be under His protective covering, to know the unmatchable joy of intimate fellowship with Him. Such oneness comes from a proper fear of Him, fear that might be described as reverence expressed through submission to His will.

Relationship with Him cannot be gotten on the cheap. True relationship has in it the element of reverence for the things the Father values, from which springs a desire to live in obedience to His commands. It is the same as a hard-boiled egg soaking in red vinegar, where the taste and the color of the vinegar become indistinguishable from the egg itself. The attributes of the Father become so much a part of the one seeking blessing as to be inseparable from Him. My problem is that rather than jumping voluntarily into the brine, I foolishly remain on the sidelines of the faith, jealous of others who are seeking, yet not willing to make the commitment myself.

Prayer: Lord God, forgive me for all those times when I have resisted the work You were doing in my heart. I choose today to soak in You, Lord. I want more than anything to be indistinguishable from You.

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