Wednesday, October 23, 2013

Where God Finds Pleasure

His pleasure is not in the strength of the horse, nor his delight in the legs of a man; the LORD delights in those who fear him, who put their hope in his unfailing love. ~ Psalm 146: 10-11

Cowboy, rolling on the ground laughing at my story!

We trotted through planted pines, loped along old woods roads, and galloped across fields enjoying the warm sunshine and the crisp air of an idyllic winter morning in Pine Mountain, Georgia. Rays of sunlight highlighted the muscular physique of the mount that carried me effortlessly along the fence line that led back to the barn. I was feeling comfortable in the saddle and in perfect rhythm with the rocking chair motion of the smooth stride of my Tennessee Walker. After all, it was only my second time straddling a horse. I was feeling pretty good about my skill in this new adventure.

Did you know horses sometimes take off like they are shot from a canon as they get closer to the barn?

I didn't.

Well, my horse lurched forward, then squatted backwards, and uncoiling like a jack-in-the-box, she literally launched me from the middle of her back. I sailed over her front in an ungraceful arc, landing square on my back. Slowly, I rolled over on all fours, hunched up like a cat walking a tight-wire, trying to get my wind back. In a couple of minutes I got my legs under me, and stood up. I brushed off the dirt and grass. The embarrassment I was covered with still clung to me.

In that moment I found no pleasure in the strength of a horse!

Was God not pleased with my horse? Actually, in that scenario, I think God found great pleasure in the strength of the horse! I believe our Creator has a sense of humor, and to go further, knew what was about to happen--Heaven would enjoy a little comedy relief. No worries, it would not be a Humpty Dumpty ending. In my imagination, God gathers a few of the saints around, and says, "Want to see something funny? Watch this."

Amid oohs and aahs and laughter, some saint giggles, "That had to hurt!"

The Psalmist is reminding us that God's greatest pleasure isn't found in the natural physical strength of those things He created--not horses and not people. Instead, His greatest pleasure is found where He finds the supernatural strength of faith. Nothing is more pleasing to God than a man, woman, boy, or girl who holds to the hope--that no matter what happens, they are in the Providential care of a God who unfailingly loves them.

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