It had just been one of those weeks. Where the pleasant and all the unpleasant combine and at the end you’re left wondering which way is up.
A tangle of graduation plans for our youngest, photos waiting for editing that I could never get to, a cold to fend off (thank you elderberry extract and vitamin C with zinc), dinners to arrange and attend, laundry to search for (where do the socks keep going???) and errands galore on zero sleep once again. Insomnia not withstanding, I foolishly thought I was managing it all.
But the house started to resemble a war zone caked in rampant dog hair, my to-do lists danced while sleep evaded, and I’m pretty sure there was a point where I sat down in my bedroom alone to cry but tears ended up just being way too much work.
I needed chocolate, make no mistake, and I needed it yesterday.
At the end of the bed was my Bible so I hugged it to my chest and thought, “yes, this is right. He’s going to commiserate with me in this, and then all of this will change.”
Oh, when will I learn that His ways are not my ways.
I’ve been re-studying the Psalms, and my Bible opens to Psalm 16, and behold, the next verse I read is the verse that will allow me to wallow and commiserate, right?
“Lord, You have assigned me my portion and my cup; You have made my lot secure. The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; surely I have a delightful inheritance!” Psalm 16:5,6 *emphasis mine.
Can you smell the irony?
My portion and my cup felt a lot like insomnia, anxiety, and chaos. My own inheritance smelled like three day old dishes and failure. Not exactly what David meant m’thinks.
I gaze up at the ceiling to see if He’s smirking, but all I see is fresh cobwebs and a ceiling fan that hasn’t been cleaned since 1999.
“Really Lord? You’re going to give me this happy-go-lucky verse about how blessed David was, the “happiness” verse everyone quotes whenever things go their way? When my “unpleasant places” are far outstripping the pleasant ones right now?
Lord why would You show me this?”
And whether He chose this verse or I just happened to be reading there, isn’t the point. What matters is that I wait for Him to reveal Himself in the middle of the pleasant AND the unpleasant. *emphasis mine… again.I wait for Him to reveal Himself in the middle of the pleasant and the unpleasant. Click To Tweet
And so I wait, and slowly I look back at the words, and have I ever really understood their context and origin and deliberate life-lesson buried inside?
Apparently not the way He thinks I should.
And I want to be able to declare like David these wonderful and emphatic truths. I really do. In the pleasant and not-so-pleasant. So I do some digging in an old commentary and I find out that David was actually referencing two inheritances.
When he praises God for the boundary lines and secure lot he’s been given, he’s remembering the legacy left to him and his nation…. the Promised Land. And within that fulfilled promise was once a practical provision, David’s reference about a secure lot being cast. This was a practice dividing up plots of land to each Israelite in random casting. Therefore, no one got preferential treatment, everyone was granted whatever parcel of land they wound up with at a roll of the promised-land-dice, if you will.
Not so with God. He is saying that with God, all the boundary lines, all the lots cast for him, fall in pleasant places, that He grants us an inheritance exceedingly over and above all that we ask or need.
I stop to really drink that in for a minute.
David’s verses are saying that although God has already been more than faithful, on a spiritual and eternal level, God is also fulfilling an even better inheritance.
Essentially, David is living within one legacy-giving inheritance while acknowledging, declaring, and longing for another, more overwhelming one.
This is something I could finally wrap my tired brain around.
And more importantly, my heart.
And listen, it took me a second but I got it. That first inheritance? Was pretty epic when you stop to think about it, and hard-won. From the moment God spoke to Moses about freeing His people right up to the Jericho walls coming down, there had been pleasant and not-so-pleasant moments, days, months, years.
I sit there for a second, considering all the epic things He’s been faithfully bringing me through, still standing, and then I think hard about the rest of His plans for me, the practical, and the eternal ones all tangled up together in a way.
I leave the room ready to face the rest of the day, saturated in His presence, restored with His promises. Also, I might or might not have hummed fairly loudly and annoyingly for the duration.
But it’s because I decide to acknowledge like David that the eternally-charged inheritance God has designed and allotted to me is even better than the former ones. And I decide to trust Him for it.
In the pleasant and not-so pleasant.
Because one day, the not-so pleasant will all pass away.
And the Great I Am will provide us with good boundary lines, and our lot in life secured.
And our delightful inheritance?
Looks an awful lot like Him.