Tripped up! Who hasn’t been?
We trip over slippers in a dark bedroom. We stumble over a rake handle in the yard. An uneven portion of sidewalk catches us unaware. We all trip occasionally.
But we also get tripped up by non-material things.
- We stand ready to order a salad and get tripped up over a fudge brownie in the display window.
- Poised to head out on our two-mile walk we get tripped up by a rerun of the Science channel’s epic episode of “How Blimps Are Made.”
- Finally determining to get serious about saving for our retirement we get tripped up over a new bass boat to replace our current one.
- And then there was Asaph, writer of the 73rd Psalm. He was navigating life’s ups and downs and fairly content with his progress when he got tripped up over envy.
That’s right – envy. Never saw it coming. He wasn’t looking ahead; he was looking around. And what he saw knocked him almost off his feet … almost sent him sprawling face down in the dirt.
He saw wicked people succeeding, towering over him in an unholy hierarchy. It wasn’t supposed to be that way. He was doing his best to live Godly and with integrity. He made sacrifices those at the top hadn’t made. The arrogant “never-mind-the-rules” crowd actually were doing better than he was.
And here’s the testimony of this Psalm-writer after he tripped:
“What’s going on here? Is God out to lunch?
Nobody’s tending the store.
The wicked get by with everything;
they have it made, piling up riches.
I’ve been stupid to play by the rules;
what has it gotten me?”
Psalm 73:11-13 The Message
Asaph came close to publishing this declaration – going on a speaking tour outlining the unfairness of life … until reminded by God to consider the eternal implications of the way we live.
So in the end, this isn’t a devotional about tripping over rake handles or toys underfoot. It’s really a rebuke to those of us who sometimes assume God isn’t paying attention to our world … is out to lunch and won’t be back for awhile.
It’s a reminder to us that God hates false scales (Proverbs 11:1). He doesn’t miss our cultural ‘price tag switching’ to where the egg of an eagle is of more value than the life of an unborn child. He sees our compromises to keep us in the good graces of the politically correct crowd.
This week stop looking around and comparing where you are to where others are. Keep your eyes on Jesus and trust his pleasure with you as you live in truth and integrity. Forget all other comparisons. His assessment is the only one that matters.
God reminded Asaph that he wasn’t the one to travel down the slippery slope … in the light of eternity God-followers were the ones promised a non-slip future.
“Count on this: The wicked won’t get off scot-free, and God’s loyal people
will triumph.” Proverbs 11:21 The Message
“The Lord knows how to rescue the godly from trials and to hold the unrighteous
for punishment on the day of judgment.” II Peter 2:9 NIV