Possible with God

Oct. 28, 2020

Scripture Readings

I love the poetic nature of the Psalms, the regular rhythmic order that it has.  Did you know that Ps 119 is an acrostic poem - the sections begin with successive letters of the Hebrew alphabet?  The Samekh is the 15th letter of the alphabet.  It means “to uphold”, “to lean upon”, like a shield. Verse 114 says exactly that, “You are my refuge and my shield.”

A lot of Psalms 119 is about the Law.  David loves the laws, the commands of God, because the laws keep us safe, sustains, rescues, and gives us hope.  We need laws.  For example, I love being in Cambodia, but I hate the traffic. Why? Because people don’t follow the traffic laws, and often drive right in the middle of the road, between two lanes. They are like the double-minded, as David talks about, not sure which lane to be in. It’s confusing.

Lamentations is also poetic, using parallelism to emphasize a thought, either through opposite themes (“How deserted lies the city, once so full of people,  She who was queen has now become a slave”) or to expand the idea more completely (Bitterly she weeps at night, tears are on her cheeks.).  But the main theme is the same: God is righteous and just. When we rebel and don’t turn from our ways, there are consequences. Often as believers we want to focus on God’s love and forget that He is also just. These verses are a good reminder that we need to be in awe of our God, just like C.S. Lewis in the Narnia series said, “Of course he’s not safe! But he is good; he’s the King, I tell you!”

And so how should we act?  Titus refers back to following the laws, to be obedient and ready to do good. Titus reminds us how we used to be double-minded, serving many sinful masters.   And how to be grateful for deliverance from our miserable condition by God, who through the Holy Spirit, renewed us, justifying us through grace and making us heirs of eternal life. So now we only serve one master, Christ our Saviour, and we can devote ourselves to doing good through love and gratitude.

Some people have told us that it is pointless to work with our ladies who were living as scavengers, poor, with little education, full of malice and deceit, living in envy, anger and distrust of everyone around them. They told us these people can’t be helped.  It is too late. But these verses remind us that without God, we are also like that.

Every morning at the sewing centre, our ladies are learning about virtues and values of love, forgiveness, honesty, faithfulness and perseverance. They often say they have never heard messages like these and are being challenged to be more encouraging and helpful at work, at home and in their communities. They are changing. They are being delivered from their miserable condition. It is not too late! Luke 18:27 states, “What is impossible with man is possible with God.”  

Minako Polischuk

Foothills family IW living and serving in Cambodia, passionate about all things relating to justice and compassion.