Looking for "Good"
Psalm 4:6a "Many are saying, "Who will show us anything good?". With the turn of the New Year there has been a sentiment that this year will bring good news. Whether it's a new political administration or the promise of a new vaccine brought to us by hard-working scientists, things seem to be getting better. So this brings up the question, who do we look to for bringing us "good"? The Psalmist talks about how even in a time of fear or uncertainty there was only one true face of good. David continues to write that when the light of GOD's face shines on him his heart is filled with joy. In Lamentations 3:4 it is written that the LORD is my portion and on HIM I will wait. Both these scriptures point to the fact that goodness doesn't come from events changing or people or things. We often think that the goodness of GOD is simply the things HE's capable of doing. The psalmist challenges that notion by showing us that it's the face of GOD that we are to be reassured by. The parable of the prodigal son can also illustrate this point. The father's love was the true reward for both the sons but they both missed out on it. One of them had to be deprived of it before he realized that that's truly what could sustain him. The older brother missed that entirely because he was so focused on the things that his father's love had provided him. When he returns from the field and confronts his father about the party he's throwing for the lost brother, his father reminds him that everything has already been given to him. Even by living in that house with every possible blessing, the older brother had still missed out on accepting his fathers love. It wasn't the things that the father had accumulated and passed onto his sons. No. It was that love which had propelled the old man to literally run to his son as he returned home and it was that same love that he lavished on the elder son daily. If we keep looking at the world to define what's good and how to feel happy we'll never be satisfied. We'll be swayed and shaken by the downs. And similarly when good things happen we let that emotion guide our thanksgiving to GOD. But let us not forget that HIS face shining upon us is the ultimate source of good. This is the peace that lets our hearts and minds flood with contentment.