A Change in Perspective
It troubled me deeply till I entered the sanctuary of God. Psalm 73:16–17
My hometown had experienced its heaviest winter in thirty years. My muscles ached from hours of shoveling the unrelenting snow. When I stepped inside after what felt like a fruitless effort, weary as I kicked off my boots, I was greeted by the warmth of a fire and my children gathered around it. As I gazed out the window from the shelter of my home, my perspective of the weather shifted completely. Instead of seeing more work to do, I savored the beauty of frosted tree branches and the way the snow blanketed the colorless landscape of winter.
I see a similar, but much more poignant, shift in Asaph when I read his words in Psalm 73. In the beginning, he laments the way the world seems to work, how wrongs seem to be rewarded. He doubts the value of being different than the crowd and living for the good of others (v. 13). But when he enters the sanctuary of God, his outlook changes (vv. 16–17): he remembers that God will deal with the world and its troubles perfectly and, more importantly, that it is good to be with God (v. 28).
When we’re chilled by the seemingly ceaseless problems in our world, we can enter God’s sanctuary in prayer and be warmed through by the life-altering, perspective-changing truth that His judgment is better than ours. Though our circumstances may not change, our perspective can.
In Psalm 37 David addresses the same perplexing issue Asaph writes about in Psalm 73—the wicked prosper while the godly suffer unjustly. David tells those who suffer unjustly not to fret or be envious, for God is just and will one day make all things right (Psalm 37:7–11, 35–38). Instead, those who fear the Lord are to rest fully in God and to continue to live holy lives (vv. 3–6). For the Lord “will not forsake his faithful ones” (v. 28).
Are you weighed down because of injustice? How can the hope expressed in these psalms encourage and strengthen you?