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Daily Reformation, Psalm 36:5-10

From the Reformer

The ungodly may run to every excess in wickedness, but this temptation does not prevent the people of God from trusting in his goodness, and casting themselves upon his fatherly care; while the ungodly, whose minds are degraded, and whose hearts are polluted, never taste the sweetness of his goodness so as to be led by it to the faith, and thus to enjoy repose under the shadow of his wings. The metaphorical expression of wings, as applied to God, is common enough in Scripture. By it God teaches us that we are preserved in safety under his protecting care, even as the hen cherishes her chickens under her wings; and thus he invites us kindly and affectionately to return to him.

—John Calvin, Commentary on Psalms

Pulling It Together

The man told the pastor that he used to go to his church when he was a boy. So, the pastor encouraged him to come back but before the sentence was completely out of his mouth, the man interjected, “Oh, you’ll never see me there again. It’s been too long. I wouldn’t know how.” The pastor replied, “Just walk through the door. You will be received warmly by the congregation—and by your Heavenly Father. Just come.”

But he grimly testified again that he would not. Some people insist on harm. They know what they are about to do is wrong but they are going to do it anyway. This happens too often with children who refuse their parents’ love, help, and protection. They insist on hurting those kind to them, refusing their help, and running away. It is an easy thing to see that if children do with this to their earthly parents that it is also done by grown-ups with our Heavenly Father.

It is so easy to move away from God but sometimes very difficult to return. It helps to realize that his love for you is steadfast, even if your love for him has faltered.

© Mark E. Ryman, Daily Reformation: Devotions with the Reformers

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