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June 21, 2020 10:45 pm
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Are you doing tonight is increasing discouragement with the devious and powerful in defeating the record strategy and determination about fortunately. Driver shows is that it can be done that I am Turning Point.
Dr. David Jeremiah shows the five state battle plan for victory over discouragement strike from Psalm 142 from when your world falls apart is the conclusion of praying under pressure. While I mentioned to you when we met about last time that summer studying right now has been one of my favorites since I've been in ministry, especially because it shows a man who was highly regarded and with huge responsibility and hold up in a cave with a bunch of respondents. The conversation there is depressing and all of a sudden everything changes and I hear in my ears when I read that Psalm, a group of men singing in a cave of praise to the Lord and it's it's really an encouraging experience. We have a wonderful men's group. Shadow Mountain throughout the year when we have been able to meet before the coronavirus women have four, five, 600 men many times together in a in our event center and it was worth going to that event just to hear these guys sing praise the Lord something about the voices of men banding together saying that bring strength your life. And so that's what were going to look at as we open our Bibles again today. Psalm 142 and let's get no deal with the issues of life and the problems that you face. But I'm one of those male creatures who has a tendency to turn inward when problems come to get client to just kind of bury it all down in here not want to talk to anyone. We build the shell around ourselves, thinking were the only ones with the difficulties and the more we think about it, the more certain we are that no one else understands. I think about times I wished I could go talk with another pastor. Tell them about some of the things I was struggling with, but I would think about doing it meant I would think. What will they think I'm supposed to know how to do these things are what will they say so you just keep it all inside Alexander McLaren one of the great writers of Scripture describes it this way. He says the soul but has the way through deep waters usually has to do it alone. We have companions enjoy but in sorrow we have to face things by ourselves and Ella Wheeler Wilcox wrote these famous lines which you've heard before laugh and the world laughs with you, but week and you weep alone or something about problems that drive us into a feeling of being deserted. Now we usually are not. It's usually what we think were like Elijah who thought he was the only prophet left to believe in God and God had to remind him that there were just a few more than the one he thought was there but David felt deserted and then notice in verse six he feels depressed.
He uses an expression in his prayer. He says I am brought very low. I know that this is a touchy subject among some Christians that a Christian can never be depressed. I actually heard preachers preach that if you're depressed you can't be a Christian because Christians don't get depressed, but I don't know what they do with the word of God, because as I read the Scripture I read about Elijah who was depressed. Jonah, who was depressed and Moses, who face depression and here we have King David, a man after God's own heart and depression and the word that he uses for depression is the word for indentation. He equates this word with his soul. He says I've got an indentation in my soul I'm depressed I don't know if you've ever talk with depressed people, but as a pastor. On occasion I've had a chance to counsel with people going through depression and I know what a heavy burden that is to feel that low in your spirit. I've known people who have ended their lives because as they looked out into the future.
They have been so filled with despair that life did not seem worth living anymore. David was depressed like that all of us hope and joy were God's thoughts turn inward King Saul's harassment was no longer the problem.
It was David's own heart become the problem.
He allowed what happened to him in his circumstances to drive him in word and not to sense the presence of God in his life. I remember telling you when I began the series on the Psalms about the depression that Charles Haddon Spurgeon, the great London preacher used to face. I was reminded that when I was in seminary I was given the two little copies of his books the lectures to my students and I looked at those recently and I remembered that there was a chapter in his lectures to his students and the title of the chapter was the minister's fainting fits. I remember when I got those books as a first chapter I read because I couldn't imagine what would be in that chapter, but in the chapter Charles Spurgeon says this fits of depression come over most of us usually cheerful as we may be we must at intervals be cast down. The strong are not always vigorous. The wise not always ready brave not always courageous and the joy is not always happy. There may be here and there man of iron, but surely they must worry about rust on occasion. See if you can think of who might have said this a famous American leader.
I am now the most miserable man living. If what I feel were equally distributed to the whole human family there would not be one cheerful face on the earth to remain as I am is impossible. I must die or be better. You may be surprised to know that those were the words of Abraham Lincoln, the great President of the United States.
So don't tell me that people don't have depression if there Christians or if there people in positions of leadership. Sometimes, the greater the expectation and the greater the responsibility, the greater the tendency to be depressed, he felt depressed and then he felt defeated.
Notice verse six he cries out in his prayer Lord deliver me from my persecutors, for they are stronger than I am now what you knows what he did. David sat down in his depression. He got a yellow tablet out and he started put things in columns and he put all things were going form on this column and all the things were against him on this column and we got done he could hardly think of anything in the good, and the other column was full right down to the bottom of the page and he told it all up and he said it's over mantises. This is unfinished. Those who are against me are greater than those who are for me. There's no you see when you get into depression.
Your ability to reason gets fuzzy and foggy and you begin to see everything through a dark lens and you can't see life as it really is and that's where David was already consigned himself to defeat in so many words. In fact, he goes on to say in verse seven that he is like in prison that he is incarcerated by his troubles and there is no way he can get out and he comes to this very low point in his life with. Thank God he doesn't stay there for as we have looked at the description of his discouragement, we can go back through the same Psalm and see how discouragement was defeated in his life, for he went through this pattern that all of us can follow it when we get into the cave of discouragement.
We will just listen with our inner ear to the word of God.
Notice first of all, he began to verbalize his problems to God. So many people say what I should be telling got all my problems. God already knows my problem forever asking though. So why should I be telling on my problem. We know what I don't know the theological answer to that question but I know biblical answer, you should do it because God tells you to do it and if that's not enough reason, I can't help but there are more reasons than just being obedient. If you look in the first verse. David uses very clear language.
He says I cry out to the Lord with my voice with my voice to the Lord.
I make supplication in verse five he says I cried to you oh Lord, and in verse six, attend to my cry. David tells God how he is feeling. He describes what is going on inside of him. When we speak our minds fully and we name the problems and the people that play because it is like revealing a secret to our best friend and God is there he cares about us and we can tell him anything and we ought to tell him what's going on in our life.
That's the beginning place.
What you say pastor I like about God with you know I got busy got a whole world to run and he didn't care about my little problems.
You keep thinking like that use can keep going deeper and deeper into the fit of depression in your life. God has said were cast all of our care upon him were to bring him our burdens and were to tell the Lord what is in our heart and when we refuse to do that we short-circuit the healing process that he wants to bring about within us. I was traveling somewhere and I picked up a July 1 issue of the American waiflike magazine not going to tell you there's not much redemptive in-flight magazines.
Every time I pick up when I discover they have replaced one more page of text with pages of advertisements you notice that it's like going to a shopping mall on the airplane but tucked in between all of the ads in this particular issue was a little article that caught my attention because it had in the title of it. The word journaling and I've been collecting stuff on that subject. Because this is a process that is meant so much to me in the more recent days of my life and I began to read this written by some secular gurus into business and emphasis.
What he said now listen this battling illness and pain with pen and paper may be unorthodox, but it may also spell relief, people who write for 20 minutes a day about the traumatic events reduce their doctors visits improve their immune systems and among arthritis sufferers use less medication and have greater mobility. These are the words of James Pennebaker, PhD and professor at the University of Texas at Austin who has conducted numerous studies on the topic, why is there such relief, suppressing negative emotions can weaken the immune system and arouse your fight or flight system.
He wrote, churning up blood pressure and heart rate. Writing about conflict or trauma helps organize the experience and the net effect is that people can move beyond the stressful event he quotes another PhD by the name of Mark Lumley and associate professor of psychology at Wayne State University in Detroit. He reasons that the positive results of journaling has something to do with the nature of pain. I wrote down these words he said writing about stressful events relieves the emotional part of pain that's when the patient says I can still feel it. But it doesn't bother me as much." Not listen carefully. I don't buy a lot of psychologists say I don't read psychologist to prepare for my messages and I'm not into psychotherapy, and that since the where we got some fine Christian counselors that we work with here in this ministry, but I have affinity with them because they counsel from the Bible whatever he wants and I want these guys will say some worthless into and what he said is interesting especially in light of the word of God. What he said was it's important to express the issues of your life. And if that's true, just from the human psychological aspect what in the world happens when you express those things to the creator God the Almighty.
One of the universe.
You put God in that equation, and it elevates the effectiveness way beyond anything a psychologist can track. Aren't you glad that you have the kind of God that when you're in the cave under the pressure in the midst of all kinds of problems you can lift your voice up to him and say Lord.
This is a lousy day and I don't know what's going on and then begin to tell him the problems. I'm not talking about whining or having your own pity party I'm just saying. Being honest in your prayer to God about the problems in your life when you do that, God begins the process of recovery.
Notice the second thing David did he not only verbalized his problems before God. But be careful not not getting psychological on you.
He visualized his problems before God.
Notice what he says in this very same context. He says I brought out my complaint before him.
I declared before him my trouble. Take your pan and underline the words before him there in the text twice now. Here's what David is saying when he gets his problem all sorted out. He takes it and he kind of like on a scroll, he unrolls it in the presence of God and nieces God. Here's my problem.
Now you see what happens a lot of times we get into this issue where we pray.
But God doesn't get into the equation.
If you don't lift God up and worship and praise and make them a part of the entry part of your prayer when you get to these praying your problems to God. All you're doing is rehearsing your own misery. And as I told you before there's a way to pray where you feel worse when you're done, and before you started, but when you enter into his presence with praise and when you open up your heart to God and see who God really is and began to pray to the one who was the creator of the universe. All of a sudden your prayer gets into the perspective of Almighty God and I love the way David says that he pours out his prayer before God. One of the reasons you find praise in almost every one of the Psalms of encouragement is because just from the human thinking process now when you praise God. God gets into the equation of your prayer and tell you, praise God.
You can pray as if God were watching you instead of as if he were the one to whom you are, pray, and then notice.
Thirdly, as he climbs up out of this time of despondency. He recognizes his presence before God. Notice verse three.
This is incredible.
Verse he says when my spirit was overwhelmed within me. Then you knew my path. David is beginning to realize that it's one thing to verbalize your problems before God.
He's done that he shown God everything that's going on in his mind and in his heart and his emotions, but now what he begins to realize is that all the time he was doing this God was involved already and that when he was walking through this time of discouragement and overwhelmed with the problems of his life. Even then, God knew him.
Even when David didn't know or think about the presence of God in his situation. Even then, God was there in one of my favorite remembrances of Kapor is something told me that his granddaughter said one day, what is ask his little granddaughter. What can you tell me that you learned in Sunday school about God and she said what I learned about God is that God never says oops and you know what, that's a profound theological truth is it not God didn't look down and say all Mike Davidson K Davidson, depression. Dave is going through difficult time. David said he finally recognize that when all of this stuff was going on at that very moment God knew and that's all a wonderful revelation to all of us when were going through difficult because troubles can sometimes cloud our vision problems can keep us from seeing God in the picture, and it's not until we begin to realize that God is in the midst of all of this that we can began to see the healing process take place in the presence of God. He realized his provision in God.
Notice verse five he said you are my refuge, my portion in the land of the living. As David reviews the situation he is told God all that there was in his heart he is shown God all that there was in his heart.
He is remembered that the one to whom he is praying is the Almighty one, the creator of heaven and earth, and now he begins to rejoice in the provision that God has made for him. He said you are my refuge and my portion in the land of the living. I remember what an old African-American preacher once said about this verse. He said there's no living in the land of the living like living on the living God, and he was right. The land of the living is not a reference to eternity, or heaven, it's a reference to the land of living right now how many of you are glad that the Bible is been written for people who live in the land of the living not just about pie-in-the-sky by-and-by not just about in the sweet by-and-by in the pearly gates.
The Bible is written to help those of us who live in the land of the living we get up every day and go to work and face our challenges David learned to trust in the God who was his portion in the land of the living and then finally in this outline of what he did.
He verbalized his problems to God, he visualized his problems before God. He recognized his presence before God, he realized his provision in God and finally he resumes his praise to God.
In verse seven he says bring my soul out of prison that I may praise your name the righteous shall surround me, for you shall deal bountifully with me. I went to the once again, look at your Bibles and notice in verse one of Psalm 142 we read. I cry out to the Lord with my voice with my voice to the Lord. I make my supplication important. My complaint before them in verse seven he says for you shall deal bountifully with me. David is gone all the way through the cycle and now he's back up, ready to praise God again.
That's what happens when you pray, you know you can pray your way through pressure.
You can pray your way through sickness. You can pray your way through difficulty. You can pray your way through problems. If you're honest in your prayer if you don't get spiritual in the sense of using Christian needs in all of this but you just honestly unload your soul on God, he will meet the need in your life. David started out in depression and he ended up in price.
I like to think that when David finished writing Psalm 142. He turned the page of his journal over for one more entry and I want you to turn the pages of your journal over to Psalm 57. This is also, as you will notice a song that was written in the cave. In fact, it says a Mick Tom which is a word which means a teaching Psalm a teaching Psalm of David when he fled from Saul into the cave and most people believe this was written at the same time or in the same setting is the Psalm which we have just studied what this is more of a song.
In fact, it's like a lot of our hymns. There are two verses and one chorus.
The two verses play out and after each verse facing the course and I want you to follow along in your Bibles. As I read this and you will see what I'm talking about the first verse begins at verse one and goes through verse for the first verse of the hymn, be merciful to me, will God be merciful to me for my soul trusts in you and in the shadow of your wings. I will make my refuge until these calamities have passed by. I will cry out to God most tied to God who performs all things for me. You shall send from heaven and save me.
He who reproaches the one who would swallow me up. Selah God shall send forth his mercy and his truth.
My soul is among lions. I lie among the sons of men were set on fire whose teeth are spears and arrows and their tongue a sharp sword.
Now here's the chorus be exalted. All God above the heavens let your glory be above all the earth, and then he starts to sing verse two. My heart is steadfast.
Oh God, my heart is steadfast.
I will sing and give praise awake, my glory away gluten harp, I will awaken the dawn.
I will praise you oh Lord among the peoples. I will sing to you among the nations, for your mercy, reaches into the heavens and your truth into the clouds. Here's the course again. Say it out loud with me. Be exalted, all God above the heavens let your glory be above all the earth. Now in my sanctified imagination.
When David finished with his prayer of Psalm 142 he began to sing the words of Psalm 57.
I remember he's in this huge cave so he didn't have to sing real loud for everybody to hear him be exalted in that old Lord's, and all of a sudden he heard another raspy voice coming from another part of the cave in one of those 400 rugged man began to sing along with that someone over here joined in and before he could look around in my mind's eye I see all of these discontented debtors and distressed men standing to their feet and in this sound chamber.
Their singing praise to God be exalted, old Lord among the inhabitants from the pit of discouragement to the glorious pinnacle of praise to Almighty God can that happen in your life and mine. You know it can when we come to God with our problems and we honestly acknowledge who he is, what's going on with us, we can begin to say yes one of the great discoveries I keep making as I studied the Bible and especially the Psalms.
Here are a collection of writings, mostly from David about all the problems and difficulties that he had his honestly crying out to God in the midst of his despair running from Saul trying to find his way to the throne that he's been given. And yet in the midst of all that is the preeminence of worship and praise and I just know I'd like to not believe that in some ways because it seems so counter intuitive. Why would you want to be singing when you're in a cave. Why would you want to be praising God when you're in the midst of problems and yet that's what the Scripture teaches us and if you've ever done that. If you've ever been in the midst of a difficult time and lift up your voice and praise to God for who he isn't all that is done you realize what an incredible moment that can be soaked as we move through the rest of the Psalms to keep saying that you can avoid it. And there's no way to get around it. Praise belongs in the midst of problems and that we best accept it because if we don't were going to be in denial of the word of God we are tomorrow.
Women talk about this little phrase that shows up in our conversation on occasion, you might be surprised to find out it's in the Bible when you're at your wits and never been there maybe are there now. Tomorrow will have some great teaching from Psalm 107 David Jeremiah thank you so much for being with us will see you next message comes from Shadow Mountain Community Church with Jeremiah serves as senior pastor's Turning Point is ministering to you later is not Turning Point PO Box 38, San Diego, CA 9216 visit our website at Jeremiah don't hold/radius no copy of David shelter involved sure to encourage you in this unprecedented time of any amount purchase the Jeremiah study Bible and the English standard and new international visions stand in the large print in the new King James in a variety of options, visit David Jeremiah don't you I'm very join us tomorrow as we continue the series when your world falls upon Tehran to an employee with the Jeremiah thanks for taking time to listen to families in Christian