A Bad Economy

Psalm 33:1-35:28

A Bad Economy

But the eyes of the LORD are on those who fear him,
on those whose hope is in his unfailing love,
to deliver them from death
and keep them alive in famine.
Psalm 33:18-19

Go Deep: If you are struggling to stand under the weight of a bleak economy, I would suggest you open your Bible to Psalm 133 and just slowly, absorbingly read it.  I guarantee that you’ll feel a whole lot better if you do!

Bad economies have been around since the beginning of human history.  The difference today is that we have government bailouts and unemployment insurance to hopefully ease our pain.  In David’s day, they had famine, starvation and death! (Psalm 33:19)  And though I don’t care much for our current economic crisis, I’ll take what we’ve got any day over the poor economic indicators in Israel at the time this psalm was penned.

But no matter what era or environment we find ourselves in, we serve a God who is bigger than the bad economy du jour. That’s why we can put our hope in him.  It is God, not the president in the White House, not the loan officer at the bank, not our boss at work, who is our real source: “We put our hope in the Lord. He is our help and our shield.” (Psalm 33:20, NLT)  In the midst of even the most terrible and disheartening conditions, we can remain joyfully confident: “In him our hearts rejoice, for we trust in his holy name.” (Psalm 33:21, NLT))  We can be the most secure people even in times of great social insecurity, because we are succored by his relentless, stubborn and unstoppable love: “Let your unfailing love surround us, Lord, for our hope is in you alone.” (Psalm 33:22, NLT)

Moreover, we do not have to just endure a bad economy, we can rejoice in it—yes, you heard me—because we are in the care of the One who not only watches over all humanity—“The Lord looks down from heaven and sees the whole human race” (Psalm 33:13), he watches those who belong to him like a hawk—“But the Lord watches over those who fear him.” (Psalm 33:18) Furthermore, he is not only watching, he is working—actually using the lousy economy to bring about his plans for you: “But the plans of the LORD stand firm forever, the purposes of his heart through all generations.” (Psalm 33:11)

I like what Andrée Seu, a senior writer for WORLD magazine, says: “We shall finally have to acquiesce to the fact that God has a purpose for lousy economies.” I suppose that is the real reason we can laugh in the face of a terrible economy—it is just another instrument in God’s toolbox to bring about his plan for Planet Earth and fulfill his purpose for little, ol’ you—and me, too!

Just Saying… C.S. Lewis wrote in The Problem of Pain, “My own experience is something like this. I am progressing along the path of life in my ordinary contentedly fallen and godless condition, absorbed in a merry meeting with my friends…or a bit of work that tickles my vanity…when suddenly a…headline in the newspapers that threatens us all with destruction, sends this whole pack of cards tumbling down. At first I am overwhelmed, and all my little happinesses look like broken toys. Then, slowly and reluctantly…I try to bring myself into the frame of mind that I should be in at all times. I remind myself that all these toys were never intended to possess my heart, that…my only real treasure is Christ.”

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