Thursday, June 16, 2016

Thoughts on Psalm 119:51

51 The proud have me in great derision,
Yet I do not turn aside from Your law.
I was once invited to play some music for a Bible study. The night before, one of the strings broke on my guitar. So I figured I would swing by Guitar Center and pick up a set of strings the next day. No big deal.

But that night, I had a dream. In it, I was about to cross the street, when a police officer stopped me and said I had to go down to the corner and cross at the crosswalk. I laughed and said, “Sorry, I’m just taking….” and I couldn’t remember the phrase. So I said, “I’m taking.. You know, Poisson’s equation!”

I woke up and laughed about the dream. I must be a true engineering nerd to be dreaming about equations! But as I thought about it, I remembered that Poisson’s equation is the mathematical principle that describes “the path of least resistance,” which was the phrase I couldn’t remember in the dream.

Through that, I knew God was asking me not to buy those guitar strings. It was so easy for me to go buy them. I had the money, I had the time. And I certainly wasn’t going to go perform for a group of people with only 5 strings on my guitar! But it was the path of least resistance, and God was saying not to take it.

The eleventh hour came, and as I walked up to the door of the house, I still had the expectation that God would provide that missing string. Maybe someone in the house would have some guitar strings for me.

As I started to play, still with only 5 strings, I felt so silly, vulnerable, and embarrassed that my songs would be missing certain key notes. It may not seem like a big deal, but it was a big deal to me. Why couldn’t I just play my guitar with 6 strings? I had the money!

God seldom, if ever, calls us to take the path of least resistance. And as a result, we are often vulnerable to “derision” (that is, contemptuous ridicule or mockery).

Walking with God is not easy. It’s not complicated, it’s quite simple. But it’s not easy.

Think of Jesus. The Son of God, nailed to a Cross. Everyone saying, “If you are the Son of God, come down from the cross!” He was put into a very vulnerable situation at the direction of the Father, and as a result was scorned, ridiculed, and mocked.

But then God uses those vulnerable situations. He shows up and does the miraculous.

That Bible study was a very powerful experience with God. I had a vision while I was playing. Several people were deeply touched by God. One woman walked up to me with tears streaming down her face. She took my hands in hers and just looked at my hands.

I’m thinking, “I’m not that good at the guitar… plus I only have 5 strings!” But God touched her heart. Simply because I was willing to subject myself to vulnerability, even if it was in my own mind. I doubt anyone there even noticed I was missing a string.

There are times we may feel foolish, derided - ridiculed and mocked. But if we are willing to dig our heels in and assert in our hearts that “I will not turn aside from Your Word”, we will see the power of God manifest in our lives.

Scripture taken from the New King James Version®. Copyright © 1982 by Thomas Nelson. Used by permission. All rights reserved.

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