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Wednesday, June 23, 2010

God-chosen lives

And these God-chosen lives all around—what splendid friends they make! (Ps. 16:3)

God places us in relationship with others.  He places us in those specific relationships that we need in order to develop into the person he designed for us to be.  We need those "others" as much as they need us - there is a specific time and reason for each relationship.  They are placed directly in our path - to pray, uphold, and to do battle.  Sometimes we think we have done all the choosing in the relationships that we pursue - when in actually, God has been at work placing those individuals in our path for this very moment.

My choice is you, God, first and only. And now I find I'm your choice! (Ps. 16:5)

David exclaims with a certainty that he has made God his first choice - his only choice.  Don't miss the next line - and now I find I'm your choice, God!  David's revelation about his "choices" in life is really two-fold.  First, the primary relationship we have in life is our relationship with God.  No other relationship matters as much - none has as much impact.  When we get that right, all other relationships seem to "fall into place".  Second, David realized that his "choice" of friendship with God placed him in the unique place of being God's choice.  God wants to be both our first choice and his only choice.  He doesn't want to grapple for position in our life.  He wants first position.

I'm happy from the inside out, and from the outside in, I'm firmly formed. You canceled my ticket to hell— that's not my destination! (Ps. 16:9-10)

Look at the end result of making God first and only.  Happiness - not the kind we get from stuff or events that bring us some fleeting moments of pleasure.  True happiness - starting on the inside and oozing forth to touch those around us.  That is how relationship with God works.  He impacts our life so we can impact those around us.  Happiness is a result of a firm foundation - don't believe me - try standing on a rickety ladder in the midst of a windstorm and see how happy you are!  God gives us "grounding" in our relationships.  The direct result of our relationship with him is that we can be a support to those around us - because of the work of his grace and mercy in our lives.  David said he was firmly formed.  How does that happen?  We see the answer in the last verse of this short Psalm.

Now you've got my feet on the life path, all radiant from the shining of your face. Ever since you took my hand, I'm on the right way. (Ps. 16:11)

No other relationship can give us the same "footing" to face life as our relationship with our Lord.  The "firmness" of our foundation is based on his first step to "take our hand" and to guide us along the path we walk in life.  As we reach out to God to take his outstretched hand, he asks us to reach out to others as an extension of his loving care for us.  Who is God asking you to reach out to today?  What relationship has he placed in your path that needs your attention?  Begin today by thanking God for those relationships that challenge you, that uphold you in tough times, and even for those that you might not even see the purpose of today.  No relationship is by accident.  God has a design in each one.