“Ahijah had dressed himself in a new garment…” 1 Kings 11:29
I just had to share this one today! From the idea, of the cost of following Jesus yesterday, to the cost of a new garment today! I found it highly significant that God would provide such a great example.
Here we have Ahijah the prophet, all dressed up in his new duds, headed out to meet Jeroboam. And as they meet the Lord leads Ahijah to tear his new outfit into 12 pieces, one for each tribe. Ugh! I’d call that a high cost of delivering God’s messages! Yet, how many people in those days got called to be filled with God’s Spirit and speak His words? Not many! So, I’d say the cost was worth the privilege.
The second reason I had to choose this verse was simply the word new! A new creation, a new garment, it’s just all too perfect! But even more perfect is God’s amazing timing. This morning before I started my reading, I read Beth Moore’s blog where she recommended “trading a spirit of despair for a garment of praise”. And I could feel my heart smile as I read it. Even as I write it again, I’m smiling. God doesn’t want us to have a spirit of Despair, but of Joy!
In the story of blind Bartimaeus, we see him calling out to Jesus for healing. Jesus hears his cries and says “come”. Bartimaeus throws off his cloak and goes to Jesus to receive his healing. (Mark 10:46-52)
Today I’m proposing we do likewise. Let’s tear off, tear up, remove the spirit of Despair that has been plaguing us and let’s go to Jesus in Joy to receive our healing! Let’s put on a garment of praise for His name’s sake. Let’s sing a new song because we have been made a new creation in Christ Jesus. Let’s enter His gates with thanksgiving and enter His courts with praise. We bring the sacrifice of praise into the house of the Lord. We will offer up to Him the sacrifices of thanksgiving! And they are sacrifices my friends. Praise and Joy are harder when we don’t feel like singing… but therein is the sweet aroma of sacrifice. I have found that when I am in my deepest lowest moments, songs of praise are the best way to pull me out of it. I will take my MP3 player and my headphones and lay on my bed just listening. I’ll put the player on shuffle and let God pick the songs. And wouldn’t you know it; He always picks the best ones! Usually I find myself listening to the first two or three, but then that third or fourth one really hits the nerve that hurts and I will play it over and over until I know every single word and I’m signing them all as loud as I can!
There’s a reason there are 150 Psalms in the Bible! It’s because music soothes, ask David and Saul (1 Samuel 16:23)! There is nothing new under the sun, no human emotion that someone who writes songs hasn’t written about yet. We comfort with the comfort we’ve been given. Someone out there has been through the very thing you’re going through and they’ve written a song to go with it. Their song, or Psalm, can and will comfort you. Ask God to help you find it so that you can offer up the sacrifices of praise.
He will help you through this.