Psalms 43-44

Psalms 43-44

Psalm 43:5Vintage message from September 1, 2002.

Is God your stronghold? Is God the One that you turn to in times of trouble? Is God the One you that you dwell with and in, even in the good times? Is He that place where you find yourself that the world can not penetrate? So many of us toy with the world and we keep one foot in the world, and we find ourselves in messes and then we run back and ask God to take care of it for us.  And then we go back into the world and we mess up things again, and then we run back and say, “Oh, God, take care of this for me!” You know what? We need to make God our stronghold all the time. We need to dwell there; live there; make every part of our life in that stronghold, and then we will have God’s protection. I’m not going to say that we’re ever going to be perfect… We’re all going to stumble. We’re all going to fall. We all need each other encouraging one another, building one another up, caring for one another…

Why do we end up with much of the trouble we have in our life? Much of the trouble we have is because we make wrong choices, and we open our lives up to the attack of the enemy…

“Why am I downcast, oh my soul?” You know what? I find that when we are not walking right with the Lord, we find ourselves struggling with depression… Sometimes the greatest medicine for depression is simply to remind ourselves. You know, if I’m depressed, if I’m struggling in my life, I know, generally, why I’m depressed and why I’m struggling in my life… It’s because I have not been right with the Lord. I have not put my hope in the Lord. I have put my hope in other things. I have put my hope in a job. I have put my hope in people. I have put my hope in the desire for  the future. And I have not put my hope in God, and guess what? That will always, always bring you to a place of depression. Put your hope in God, and everything else works its way out…

I find that the times that I am the most depressed is when I have put my hope, my desires, in other men, in other people around me. When I have lived with expectations of what those people should be, who they should be for me, how they should be responding to me, that’s a mistake. You should never, ever put your hope in other people, because, people will disappoint you. If you’re putting your hope in me, even as your pastor, I will sorely disappoint you because I’m a man with flaws. Yes, I may study God’s Word and teach it, but I oftentimes stumble over it, too. Sometimes I’ll read it and I’ll say, “No, God! I don’t want to do that!” And I challenge Him, and He kicks me in the pants! Sometimes, and I confess freely, I have walked away from God because I was mad at Him because He wanted me to do something that I didn’t want to do. I don’t always agree with everything that God says, and I don’t expect you to either, but guess what? It doesn’t mean that He’s wrong! It means that I’m wrong. The problem is in me. And so, when I get depressed, when I put my hope in the relationship I can have with you, if you’re putting your hope in the relationship you can have with me, guess what? We’re all going to be very disappointed. The only hope there is, is the hope you can put in God and that relationship you have with Him through His Word, through His light, through His truth.

Pastor Dave Elkins

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John 1:10-14