So how do you know when the wait is over and you’re finally out of that pit? Two ways.
“Psalm 40:2 describes the first one: He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; he set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand.”
- You realize after all the slip-sliding and sky diving you’ve done, your feet are finally planted on a rock, and you’ve got a firm place to stand.
- Even if the mountains fall into the sea, you’re secure.
- Even if the seas overtake the shores, you’re not going anywhere.
- If earthly rulers fall and stock markets crash, your feet are steadfast.
As long as you rest all your weight on that rock, you’re not going to fall. Praise His steadfast name, God is not a divine rug someone can pull out from under your feet.
He is there for every urgent need and any sudden spell, but an emergency room relationship with God is NOT the psalmist’s idea of a firm place to stand.
- God is unreasonably patient and merciful. Thank you Lord!
- He is NOT a drive-thru drugstore.
- He is NOT just a temporary fix in an urgent situation.
- He is NOT a fast way to get everyone to forgive us.
- He is NOT for us a good side to get on when we need Him to save our scrawny necks.
God CAN hold our weight, the full emotional, spiritual, mental, and physical poundage of you.
2. When you realize you have got to make up your mind. God gives us a firm place to stand, but we have to decide we want to take it. The ground below our feet will be only as firm as our resolve. As long as we are wishy-washy, what’s under us will be wishy-washy too.
God’s complaint with the Israelite’s in Psalm 78 was their inability to make up their minds about Him.
- Were they with Him or Not?
- Did they want a firm place to stand or an emergency room to visit?
Like us, they wanted God when they were in trouble, but as soon as the pressure let up, they wanted to chart their own course and be their own boss. The momentary revelry of their rebellion turned into terrible bouts of captivity and consequences.
They experienced what we do: the slide into the pit is the only thrill ride. From that point on, a pit is just dirt.
Loyalty means a made-up mind. Loyal is like firm and in Psalm 78 means to be “sure…certain…ready…prepared…determined.” It means we have settled some things in advance of the inevitable temptation to revert or destructively scratch a temporary itch. It means we don’t wait until the heat of the moment to decide.
A loyal spouse doesn’t wait for temptation of a co-worker flirting, she knows before work she will be loyal. She has already made her decision.
God is firm, loyal. He made up His mind about you before the foundation of the world.
Without hesitation God offers you a firm place to stand, but your feet are not firmly set in place until you’ve made up your own mind that’s where you want to be. He will not force you to stand. He most assuredly will not force you to stay.
“The problem is, life on Planet Earth, Beth says, “consists of one crisis after another.”
Resist the enemy, he is a good shot. At some point you have to get yourself out there on that rock, trusting God is faithful and resist. Once, then twice. Ten times, then twenty-five. Thirty times, then fifty till your flesh submits and your enemy gives up on that front and quits.
You have God’s power. Use it.
Beth says about resisting the enemy, “she’s never gotten use to it, but I can be prepared or be a fool.”
I loved Beth bear in Wyoming story. Point is if your victory depends on the right circumstances, you may as well wave the white flag and surrender to defeat.
“You could make up your mind that you are in with God, standing upon that rock, for the rest of your days. When you know you are absolutely in, come what may…congratulations, Sweet Thing. You are out of the pit and your feet are on a rock.”
Eternal security is not the question. Earthly security is. It is time to make up your mind.
Family/closest friends can be one of the biggest challenges you will face from that rock. Especially if they are in their own pits. They say alcoholism is a family disease, bit it is not the only one. God is there for your family or close friends also, but He recuses only one person at a time.
Usually when you get out of the pit, somebody feels betrayed that you felt a change was necessary. Loyalty to God often is misinterpreted as disloyalty toward them.
Best quote of this chapter is: “Nobody gets the right to keep you in a pit or to shame you for bailing. Not even your mama.” My mom tried, but I broke the cycle of pain.
When God performs a dramatic deliverance in our lives, the nature of some of our closest relationships inevitably changes. The healthier we get, the more we realize how unhealthy we were.
Cooperating with God through painful relationship transitions may be the hardest work of all in our deliverance from the pit.
Persevere with Him and trust Him, not just with your life, but also with their lives. Just as you waited on God for your deliverance, wait for theirs.
Not all relationships needs to survive your deliverance. Our disfigured sympathies will keep us knee deep in the mire and our love will turn into resentment. Regardless of how we began, we can become as emotionally addicted to a relationship as to a substance.
Be brave, do the hard thing. If God is leading you to let that person go who is constantly “pushing” you away from Him and His deliverance back toward the pit. Goodbye is a necessary life skill for us former pit-dwellers.
Be strong and courageous. Do not e terrified,…for the Lord your God will be with you where ever you go” Joshua 1:9
Say goodbye to that pit once and for all. Living on that rock firmly planted is not for the fainthearted.
It’s for those who make up their mind.