“You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies; you anoint my head with oil; my cup overflows. Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I shall dwell in the house of the LORD forever.”
You may be reading these verses today wondering why your life is the complete opposite of what they are saying. I’m sure David had those moments as well. Sometimes our circumstances do not line up with these verses because there is a major sin issue. David understood this concept as he had lied, committed, adultery, and murdered. Those sins produce a chain reaction of consequences that at times I’m sure made David feel as though mercy was not placed on his life. Mercy still had its place though. For all the consequences David faced, he deserved far more severe ones.
That is not the avenue I want to focus on for this post though. This sin post may be another post for another time. I think there is an equally common reason for feeling this verse is not an accurate description of our circumstances. We mistakenly translate this verse as a guarantee to worldly and physical comfort. We translate it to job security, relationships, finances, trials, health, etc. That’s not how this works though.
God blesses our lives, but he blesses them in the ways we need it most. Sometimes that means going through difficulties in order for our spiritual lives to be given the opportunity to expand and grow. The simple truth is that we to often expect worldly comfort promises out of verses that never promise anything of the sort. We take these verses and ignore other verses like Jesus saying the world will hate us for being His followers.
How can we live in a world where we are hated, but still be so abundantly blessed? It is because our definition of blessings should be inherently different form the worlds definition. A life of comfort without Christ is useless. It doesn’t get you anywhere. It has no meaning.
The blessings we receive are different form the worlds. We receive blessings of strength in the midst of struggle. We are given peace beyond understanding in circumstances that seem overwhelming for any mere mortal. We are given hope in the midst of poverty. Acceptance in the midst of rejection. Salvation in the face of wrath. We are given blessings that do not allow us to ignore the hardships of life thus rejecting us any hope of growth and change. We are given blessings that give us the endurance and ability to press on through life. Any reward in this life is just to help us get through. The real reward exists on the other side. That is a reward only we can receive.