Listen and learn

22 10 2011

A couple of years ago I read Psalm 78 and had an “aha” moment.  It was last week’s Psalm and it was bitter-sweet reading it again.  Sweet because it was one of the inspirations for this blogging project; bitter because I’m still not much good at picking the right options in life.

The Psalm is the backstory of the people of Israel from Moses to David.  It’s not so much the historical detail that comes to the fore as the heart-attitude of the people.  Time and again a depressing note rings through –

  • stubborn, rebellious, and unfaithful 
  • they refused, they forgot, they kept sinning
  • they stubbornly tested God in their hearts
  • they did not believe God or trust him to care for them
  • all they gave him was lip service; they lied to him with their tongues
  • their hearts were not loyal to him;  they did not keep his covenant
  • they did not obey his laws
  • they turned back and were faithless
  • they were as undependable as a crooked bow
  • they angered God by building shrines to other gods

And these were the people whom God had chosen as his own! 

Why does the Psalmist paint such a distressing picture?  He tells us in the first section of the Psalm that he wants to teach “hidden lessons from the past” –

“So each generation should set its hope anew on God,
      not forgetting his glorious miracles
      and obeying his commands.
 Then they will not be like their ancestors…”

That is precisely my motivation, my “aha”.

I don’t want the descriptor “futile” to be attached to my life.  I want the next generation to learn from my mistakes, and to “set its hope anew on God”, but not just in general terms.  I want my own grandchildren to be inspired to live well, to be able to say, “Granny showed us how to live Jesus’ way”, and to find the answers to life’s questions by listening to him.

“Anyone with ears to hear should listen and understand.” (Luke 8:8)




3 responses

22 10 2011
Jan Carr

And another great post, Judy.
Keeps me connected

23 10 2011
In context « moses supposes

[…] stories are important to us, and whether it’s the warning from the past to avoid, as in Listen and Learn, or whether it is setting our current situation in a wider context, we all like to hear where we […]

17 08 2012
Inspiring a generation « moses supposes

[…] Listen and learn Share this:ShareLike this:LikeBe the first to like this. […]

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