Nate’s Notes: The Lord is Close
The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears them; he delivers them from all their troubles. The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. The righteous person may have many troubles, but the Lord delivers him from them all; Psalm 34:17-19 New International Version
A dad wrote about a trip he took with his son. One day, while my son Zac and I were out in the country, climbing around in some cliffs, I heard a voice from above me yell, “Hey Dad! Catch me!” I turned around to see Zac joyfully jumping off a rock straight at me. He had jumped and then yelled “Hey Dad!” I became an instant circus act, catching him. We both fell to the ground. For a moment after I caught him I could hardly talk. When I found my voice again I gasped in exasperation: “Zac! Can you give me one good reason why you did that???”
He responded with remarkable calmness: “Sure…because you’re my Dad.” His whole assurance was based in the fact that his father was trustworthy. He could live life to the hilt because I could be trusted. Isn’t this even more true for a Christian? 1
Please read over the passage from Psalm 34 slowly and notice all of the verbs. The righteous cry out in their time of trouble and have many problems but all other actions are done by the Lord. The Lord hears, delivers, is close, and saves. Those are such beautiful promises to faithful believers. We receive so many blessings from the Father. Notice that the Lord is our perfect father.
17 The Lord is righteous in all his ways and faithful in all he does. 18 The Lord is near to all who call on him, to all who call on him in truth. 19 He fulfills the desires of those who fear him; he hears their cry and saves them. Psalm 145:17-19
The Triune God always acts rightly and is forever faithful. The Lord is close to all who call upon him! God is not a distant tyrant just waiting for you to sin, so that He can punish you. Yahweh is not an absent father who created the universe and then abandoned it. The King of Kings is not so high and lifted up that He cannot hear your prayers. God is not a mute idol made of human hands. God is holy and exalted; however, the Lord is also close and loves us as a mother cares for her child.
As a mother comforts her child, so will I comfort you; and you will be comforted over Jerusalem. Isaiah 66:13
God acts towards us a caring parent who comforts and aids us. This is a relationship. We also need to love God and love others as He loves us. This week consider your life with the being of all beings who cares for you more than any earthly mother or father. If your parents have died or you have a strained relationship with them, remember always that you are loved by the Alpha and Omega, the King of Kings and Lord of Lords.
We praise you for your faithfulness and righteousness. Thank you that are near to us as a hen is close to her chicks. You will not abandon or mistreat us. In the precious name of Jesus we pray, amen.
- Tim Hansel, Holy Sweat, Word Books Publisher, 1987, pp. 46-47.