Bible Study & Devotional (Day 203)
🔴 Solution for Memory Loss
Contributing Writer: Irvine Saint-Vilus
Sometimes, as Christians, our biggest problem with having faith is dealing with memory loss. This spiritual predicament is evident in the life of Asa, king of Judah, who was at war with Israel’s king, Baasha. In the past, Asa trusted the LORD God to fight his battles. God always came through for him, giving Asa victory over his enemies. However, when confronted with this new challenge, King Asa forgets his source of strength and solicits the aid of Ben-Hadad, king of Syria.
Listen to what Hanani the seer tells Asa about his memory loss problem, in
2 Chronicles 16:7-8, “Because you have not relied on the LORD your God; therefore the army of the king of Syria has escaped from your hand. Were the Ethiopians and the Lubim not a huge army with very many chariots and horsemen? Yet, because you relied on the LORD, He delivered them into your hand”
The result of his memory loss is inevitable defeat at the hands of the Syrians, the very ones he called for support.
Unlike Asa, King David is a man who teaches us what to do when we face the danger of memory loss. In Psalm 18:1-15, David demonstrates how to trust God when the temptation to forget His faithfulness ensues. First, in a time of grave trouble, David recalls how God had vanquished his enemies in such a supernatural and vivid way. In Psalm 18:4-5, David describes the hauntingly close brushes he’d had with death at the hands of his attackers, personalizing its effects on his life,
“The pangs of death surrounded me… the snares of death confronted me.”
Then he’d called out to the LORD, who heard his cry and saved David from his foes dramatically and gloriously. In Psalm 18:13, David states, “The LORD thundered from heaven, and the Most High uttered His voice, hailstones, and coals of fire. He sent out His arrows and scattered the foe, lightning in abundance, and He vanquished them.”
Secondly, David voices his love for God and gives Him praise, identifying who God is through His divine attributes and declaring what He has done for David. In verse 1, David states, “I will love You, O LORD, my strength.” As his strength, David identifies God’s power and might, the One who fights on his behalf and gives him victory over his enemies. David says that God is his rock, fortress, and stronghold (his hiding place), his shield (protection), and his deliverer and salvation. God is the One in whom David puts his trust, and God is worthy to be praised (Psalm 18:2-3).
Praising God and proclaiming His awesomeness helps David and will also aid us in remembering that the same God who came through before will do so again and again!
Lastly, David begins the psalm with his deep desire to praise God for who He is before he goes on to discuss what God had done for him in the past, which is a significant sequence in the order of the passage. Looking at Psalm 18:1-3, the verses exhibit what David will do (praise God, trust God, call upon the LORD) because of what God had done (Psalm18: 4-14) (scattered his foes and defeated his enemies).
Too often, we wait for God to do something new before we start praising Him.
However, David displays that a heart posture of praise and gratitude will move God to continue to act all the more on our behalf (since He wants to do so already!).
Irvine is a published author, worship leader, instructor, and speaker. Over the past two years, she worked as an instructional assistant helping autistic students in the school system. Irvine also had the privilege of working as a chaplain in a hospital setting, which allowed her to minister to patients, staff and work in a team environment where collaboration and accountability were essential. Irvine received a Bachelor’s degree in English at the University of North Carolina at Charlotte; a Master’s degree in Divinity, and a School Counseling degree at Liberty University in Lynchburg, Virginia.
This devotional was submitted by Irvine Saint-Vilus, a loving contributor to Our Given Purpose. Edited by Torrie Slaughter the founder of Our Given Purpose® in the Commonwealth of Virginia.
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