S (Scripture): Psalm 66
Shout joyfully to God, all the earth!
Sing praises to the glory of God’s name!
Make glorious his praise!
Say to God:
“How awesome are your works!
Because of your great strength,
your enemies cringe before you.
All the earth worships you,
sings praises to you,
sings praises to your name!” Selah
Come and see God’s deeds;
his works for human beings are awesome:
He turned the sea into dry land
so they could cross the river on foot.
Right there we rejoiced in him!
God rules with power forever;
keeps a good eye on the nations.
So don’t let the rebellious exalt themselves.
O (Observation): This kind of psalm is a great way to celebrate God’s handiwork. God has rescued God’s people from slavery and this is most certainly to be celebrated. God’s work for humans is indeed glorious.
A (Application): And yet I can see how these kinds of words can be interpreted in our modern day context about how God MUST be obeyed by all nations and that all nations MUST submit to God. This is a very dangerous attitude, for God’s wisdom is beyond ours!
We think that we can capture God’s will with certainty, and start to apply these Scriptures in our country of America. We can start to assume that God is for “my” country. Did we actually corner the market on “God”?
I think we have a lot to learn, a lot of humility to express, and still need to spend a lot of time in prayer and conversation. If not, we will continue to harm many people in our country of America, and others across the globe.
God does rule, but not as a tyrant that disciplines lack of faith. God does rule, but not with weapons of destruction. God does set us free, not to prove we are the strongest, but so that we might spend our days having compassion on others and be about the work of lifting up others.
P (Prayer): Lord, give us wisdom to know our place and to discern your will. Amen.