Vindicate me, O God, and plead my cause against an ungodly nation; rescue me from deceitful and wicked men. You are God my stronghold. Why have you rejected me? Why must I go about mourning, oppressed by the enemy? Send forth your light and your truth, let them guide me; let them bring me to your holy mountain, to the place where you dwell. Then will I go to the altar of God, to God, my joy and my delight. I will praise you with the harp, O God, my God. Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.
Our Creator originally designed us to behave on the basis of His Revealed Word. It’s our Manufacturer’s operating system, if you will. After the Fall a competitive operating system called the flesh or sin nature was “installed” in all of Adam’s progeny. It was developed by Satan and is opposed to God’s Word. Before we were saved, the sin nature was our default system. But as believers we have the option of choosing which operating system to access on a daily basis. Somehow, David knew this and asked God for help in switching systems. He knew that once this was accomplished his spirit would be linked to God’s, and his feelings of oppression and rejection would become joy and delight.
There’s a good example of this in John 16:22. The night before His crucifixion the Lord told His disciples they would soon feel grief because it would appear that they had lost Him. But then they would see Him again and from that time forward no one would be able to take away their joy.
Before the cross, they hadn’t received the Holy Spirit and relied primarily on their feelings to govern their behavior. As they watched Him die, they felt grief. But the night of His Resurrection, Jesus gave them the Holy Spirit and from that time forward they had a choice. Never again could someone steal their joy without their active cooperation.
When we allow our sin nature to call the shots we become disconnected from God, and will inevitably experience feelings of sadness, rejection, and even oppression. But when we choose to once again to let God’s Revealed Word govern our behavior, we’re re-connected to Him and He makes our joy complete.
Switching metaphors, some make the mistake of thinking they can store up God’s energy. They speak of going to Church or a weekend retreat to get their “batteries recharged.” But in an appliance metaphor, we’re actually of the plug-in variety. As soon as we’re disconnected from the Lord, we cease functioning properly. Think of yourself as a toaster, not a flashlight, and you’ll get the idea.
Pray without ceasing. Read His Word every day. It’ll help you to select the right operating system and keep you plugged in too.