Heavy Soul

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Psalm 42 is where we’re going to be this morning, and we’re in a new series together called Soul Detox. Let me tell you why. Um, because we’re a bar turned into a church. And so detox is good. That’s good. Um, so. So we’re doing soul detox because it’s the. It’s a brand new year. When you think a brand new Year’s, you like to think of new things, something that you could do differently or improve on or or stop doing or whatever it is. And, and so when we think about the new year and we tend to think about detoxing our lives, we think about doing that physically. But what God has created us as beings is not just a physical being, but also a spiritual being. Just as your physical body needs food, just as your physical body needs to be healthy, so does your spiritual body. And so to start this new year off right, we’re beginning with Soul Detox. And in order to do that, we’re turning to an important place in the Bible and studying it together to see its significance and importance. And that place is in the poetic books. When you read the old Testament, you’ll see the first 17 books are historical as it relates to how God moved in history, and most specifically in the nation of Israel. When you get to the end of the Old Testament, the the last 17 books, you see that it contains the prophetic books, which is how God interacts and speaks to the people through his prophets.

Throughout the historical books that take place in the first 17 books of the Bible. And in between tells us that in the middle you have your old hymn. Are these books than, say, the poetic books he upholds? Poetic books are different than in their style than the rest of the Old Testament, because the poetic books are written as man’s response to God. So most of your Bible is more of God interacting towards man and revealing himself. And the poetic books are. I’m going to do an opening up of it. That soul is Godis is to them and seeking she God who has created me and responding back to me in in words. The poetic books are very personal, raw. They’re very real to us. They’re they fit easily in the history of Israel because and 50 interacting for the first 17 book they describing how God intervenes in what we know this nation these our soul books are come in and like a show us what happens personally in the hearts of the individuals as and its attempt to seek after. Or they do seek after God and desiring to worship him throughout the nation of Israel in their history. In fact, one of the books that we’re going to be primarily focusing on is the Book of Psalms. We’ll look at some other other verses from the poetic books, but the Book of Psalms is is what we’re looking at together, and the Book of Psalms added to a period of history that almost lasts a thousand years.

It starts with with Moses, who was the 15th century BC. And it ends during the Babylonian captivity, which is sixth century BC. The source of the name records for us as their 170 of them. The extinction of man as the God seek God in. And here’s poetic about our soul, our soul and the journey with our soul is lines per roller coaster. The individual is. It’s got its ups and God got its downs. Our God. And when we’re up, we’re up. And when we’re down, we’re down. When we’re up or down, we’re up. No no no no no I don’t know how that goes. A lot of the Psalms as it interacts with us, deal with individuals who who from their experience, have found a difficult circumstance and they desire to to worship the Lord and seek his face in the midst of their trials. We as people find ourselves easily relating to those those types of Psalms, because we ourselves go through periods of feeling devastated or heavy. We look for solutions. The Bible reveals to those to us in the Lord in Psalm 42 writes on that backdrop. Do you know, statistically, they say that our generation of people, in dealing with the heaviness of a soul, our generation of people has the highest percentage of any generation that deals with a low grade, constant depression.

And most people who experience that can’t quite put their finger on exactly what causes it. It’s interesting, though, that when you look at our society today, we have so, so much to live for compared to other nations. We possess a lot of things we have. We have a lot. Is it that live for your. But can’t really find a reason worth living. And so our live falls generation will sometimes feel out of things. Psalm 42 is written by a priest who is going through an experience that allows his soul or takes his soul to a to a place of heaviness. In fact, he says in Psalm 42 and verse five, why are you in despair, O my soul? And why have you become disturbed within me? This psalm is personal. To the struggle of an individual who’s experiencing a heaviness that doesn’t settle well with him. And he begins to reveal within Psalm 42 and verse five this despair that he is experiencing. We’re to pause and just ask this morning. I mean, what causes your soul to feel heavy? What what would you describe when you look in the Old Testament? You’ll see that some in the prophets have gone through difficult circumstances. Describe for us what experience caused their soul heavy. In fact, the poetic books is the Book of Lamentations. I didn’t tell you this, but it’s it’s job. Psalms, Proverbs, Ecclesiastes, Song of Solomon and the Book of Lamentations are poetic books in the Bible.

And Jeremiah writes the Book of Lamentations. And when he’s writing the Book of Lamentations, he’s describing the destruction that has taken place in Israel and is continuing to take place to this day in Israel. And so when he is thinking of his soul, he says this of 19 ru ah, my affliction and my covering. The wormwood and bitterness. Surely my soul remembers in his bowed down within me. And germ of the scribes. The review went for his afflictions. Heaviness of soul heaved, for he’s looking balance caught at the distance to fill in of Israel. One of the. He’s relating to something that that helps us feel distant from God or brings us distance to God. Something. Something that traps us from what God desires for our lives. And that’s the past. Maybe that’s York’s thing. You’re here and you’re just about this heavy soul that you are, I wonder, caring. And it’s because of something that’s happened in your past. Book of Man of JB in chapter four. Suffering. The more job goes through. Tremendous learning. The the story of job is all about this individual who Satan comes into his life and brings soul suffering. And so it says at five, but now it is. But now try and come to you and your thoughts, and it strikes you, and you are dismayed. What job says is something within his present circumstances is making him feel distanced from the Lord and creating this heaviness on his soul.

And so he’s wrestling with that. Maybe. Maybe it could be you this morning where you had this wonderful plan for 2015 and or maybe for the next five years, and all of a sudden you got this news. And right now, in this moment, it it has blown up in your face. Your five year plan out the window. And so your eyes and ears heaviness in the last I would point out is Jesus. Mark chapter 15. And Jesus about to go to the cross. He’s looking to the cross that awaits him, and he’s praying in the garden. And he says in Mark 1434, my soul is overwhelmed with sorrow to the point of death. Maybe there’s a heaviness of soul because you know of something that awaits you. Whatever the case, at some point in our lives, if not today, we all go through experiences that cause our soul a tremendous weight. What do you do? Well, Psalm 42 is that answer. The detox of our lives to focus on what is important in those moments as our soul weighs heavy. The psalmist. I’ll read you. The verse in just a minute, opens up with this thought as he begins to express his Psalm. Direct your feelings towards truth, because right thinking leads to healthy living. Truth is important. So direct your soul to truth because right thinking leads to healthy living.

When your soul feels heavy, your emotions are down. And when your soul is rejoicing sometimes. And most of the time. Your emotions feel great. Feelings of heaviness are important for us to recognize. Feelings are important for us to recognize. The Psalm is a book of of Psalm songs, really. And in that you, as you read them, discover and find that these ones recording these passages of Scripture are interjecting a lot of emotional experience and what they discover with God as it relates to truth. Fillings help us enjoy and appreciate the things when they are good. In fact, it tells us in Psalm 42 if it will get there for me in verse one. We click. 42. And verse one, it says this as the deer pants for the water. So my soul pants for you, O end of the verse four. He goes on, read good things. In the end he says these things I remember. And I will pour out my soul within me. For I used to to go along with the throng and lead them in procession to the house of God. This priest is remembering a time when he would gather in Jerusalem, and he would. He would worship us as are, reflecting back on how, when, how, how in and seeking truth and for God in those moments his soul delighted. Your feelings are important. They help us. And he’s distinguish when things go wrong and they help us distinguish that things are right.

But fillings. Are not intended. To guide our lives. Truth is. Fillings are intended to reveal results, but fillings are circumstantial. Philip King’s court and plead. In fact, the Bible says in the book of Proverbs in chapter 14 and verse 12, there is a way which seems right to a man, but its end is the way of death. The Bible is honest in. The way we are in our nature as human beings. And their records in life that may the Lord you feel good. The things God. But are completely dishonoring to the Lord. And in fact the Bible to God. Sin is fun for that I. And there are plenty of sinful things in this world that feel good if you do them right. But what is just a season has passed. And in the end, the promises of that sin that may have fulfilled you in the moment leave you empty. If you seek life as as if you’re going from one positive feeling to the next, and when you have a negative feeling, you want to find a positive feeling again. You could do so devoid of God and into a path of destruction. And that’s what Proverbs 1412 says. There’s a way that seems right to a man. But its end is the way of death. Its destruction. Fillings may point to us when things in life aren’t going well, when there’s injustice seen on the news or television or in life around me, there’s something within my soul that that grieves it, that I don’t.

I don’t feel good about that. And sometimes my for a time agree with God here and other times my for agree with my sinful nature apart from God when. Like when you’re in the moment of heaviness and sorrow. And God may feel distant to you. But the truth is. There’s never an aim in life where he’s more feelings. The Bible tells us that God loves a broken spirit. And he will not die from it. And this passage of Psalm chapter 42. That’s exactly what the author recognizes. The truth is important. And regardless of how he feels in the moment, those feelings are important. And regardless of how he feels, the truth endures when feelings are circumstantial. My great grandma used to always say, this too shall pass. Kids would always come to her aggravated about something, complaining. Grandma would sit there and then she would just tell us and this too shall pass. Feelings are saying. But the truth endures. Let me give you a couple of embarrassing examples from my life here. Um, last, uh, last men’s breakfast we had here at church. And I read a news article that morning on this, what I thought was reputable news source, and it was telling us about Netflix and how Netflix was going out of business. Right. And so what do I do? I come to men’s group because I know there’s a couple of guys that that all they do is watch Netflix at their house.

They don’t have cable. They trust in Netflix. And so what do I do? I say, oh man, guys, did you hear your life’s going to turn upside down? Your Netflix, your precious Netflix is going. And I’m thinking about myself too, because I’ve got a membership to Netflix. I’m like, what am I going to do? I don’t know, I guess Hulu, who knows? Who knows where I’ll go from here, right? But I’m all invested in this and everyone sitting around the table, just listen to me tell this story that I just read. It’s true, it’s true. I just I just saw it online. Everything online is true. Right? And and I had a friend who. Who. Thank you. Shalom, by the way. Laughed after men’s group, and he just texted me and said, hey, by the way, I looked this up. That article was false. The truth, I thought I had the truth, how important it would have been, you know, and I got to text all the guys after. I’d be like, okay, so I apologize. Just I’m just going to just teach the Bible for now. And I know that’s dependable. Don’t listen to me when I share news stories. I don’t know how that’s going to go. That’s just a small story, you know? Nothing significant happened there. Warm.

We thought Netflix was your war for a day. Being an hour. But giving in to those feelings, I got caught up in that moment. And I thought, ah, I the truth was you. You know, and, um, counseling. It took some secular counseling classes outside of Bible college. I didn’t hear this in a Bible college setting, so just know this. Just just listen to the story. Counseling. Counseling. The teacher told us. You know, if you’re ever counseling, here’s one thing. You always need to assume that whoever comes to you with a problem is always lying to you at first. Because the ten of us as people with high paint ourselves material than the individual that we’re. This is causing us problems borrowing. And so be aware of that. We look at this man 42 and verse and two and six. What the psalmist is saying. Is that more important than the feelings? More important than how you feel about the scenario described is is the truth. Because the truth is what sets you free and feelings are circumstantial, but the truth endures. Like me, when I go to an electronic section of any store, Best Buy Walmart, I don’t care what it is. Could be small RadioShack. When I walk in everything I need, I need it all. I feel like I need it all. I need the big screen. I need the new tablet. I need the new phone. I need it all. It feels so good.

I don’t even know what I’m going to do with it, but I need it. But you know what stops me from that? My wallet. Because that’s where the truth lies. You may feel like certain things are important and that you need them, but. But the truth is where the story should lie. That and my wife. Psalm 42, verse five and six. The psalmist describes his circumstance. He recognizes the way he’s feeling. He knows he wants to be at a place where he’s rejoicing. And so this is what he does. In five and six. He just starts preaching truth to himself. Where are you? In despair, O my soul? Like what is going on here? And why have you become disturbed within me? Hope in God, for I shall again praise him for the help of his presence. Oh my God, my soul is in despair within me. Therefore I remember you from the land of the Jordan and the peaks of Hermon, and from Mount Misery. He’s he’s saying this truth about the Lord in the midst of his circumstances. What’s important to hold on to? That God loves and God does care, and God is there in the midst of his trial. Lamentations. Uh, verses 19 and 20 are already read. But let me read verse 21. Jeremiah is describing in 19 and 20 the bitterness of his soul. But look what he does in verse 21. And this I recall. To my mind.

And therefore it gives me hope. The Lord’s loving kindness indeed never cease, for his compassion never fails. In the midst of the way I feel in the heaviness of my soul, I have got to think beyond the feelings to what I know is true. And Jeremiah says in this is hope, in this is security, because there is loving kindness indeed never ceases. His compassion towards you will never fail. Direct your feelings towards the truth. Because the right thinking leads to healthy living in Christ. Second thing that the psalmist does, he begins to describe in in verse eight. He. In verse eight he begins to to do something significant about God. Here he identifies something very important about the Lord that maybe sometimes we don’t always get in the English, but would have come across very clearly in the Hebrew. He says, let me read it in English and I’ll explain it. The Lord will command his loving kindness in the daytime, and his song will be with me in the night. A prayer to the God of my life. Throughout this entire Psalm. The priest or the psalmist refers to God with one word, Elohim. And he gets to verse eight when he’s talking about something specific about God that’s going to help him in the heaviness of his soul. And rather than refer to him as Elohim, which says a prayer to the God, that word God is Elohim. He says in the very beginning, the Lord.

And the expert he chooses to say in this verse, in any doorway or to. When someone is referring to God at any point in in history. In the Old Testament, the word Elohim is a generic term to refer to the god or a false god. It’s an emotional word that is used for the beginning of this has to as a nation. Un camp Exodus chapter eight, verses 14 at and the. When God shows up. Got up. Dismissed. He would be the nation’s deliverer. And God a year past he would look okay. There was people. And God promised he would care for them as he had blessed Abraham. And God. In Exodus chapter three, it reveals to us the story of Moses when Moses had left Egypt for 40 years. He’s out in the desert, having run for his life because he had killed an Egyptian, and he knows Pharaoh is going to take him if he doesn’t leave. And so he goes into the wilderness, and after 40 years, he comes before a burning bush. God meets him in that moment and reveals himself to him as the I am the Yehovah, the Yahweh in Exodus 314 and 15. And what the psalmist does in this moment is to go from this God that he feels distant from, reveals to himself the truth of who God is, and he makes God personal in his life. And for you. Maybe it’s important to stop and say if I am not going through a hard time right now.

I will. And there are times in my life where I know God has shown up so clearly. Where I felt close and connected to him. When I knew the importance of who he was above any and all circumstances. And for the priest, it was this moment in his life where Yahweh became Yahweh instead of just Elohim. From this distant God to this personal God who cares for his needs. And he just lets it rip. He just opens himself up to to this personal God who wants to hear his need. And in Romans chapter eight and verse 26, it tells us that the Spirit of God makes groanings for us, that when we can’t express ourselves. Meaning there. There are times in your life where you go through circumstances that are so difficult on your soul that you don’t even have words to express it, but just grief. And in that case. Where Elohim becomes Yahweh. And you recall the personalis that you have with God. If you just open your soul to him. Even at times where there are not words to just say God cares for y’all. Not only do we need to remind ourselves of the truth. But we need God. Recognize that God, your soul, who is personal to. Psalm 51 and verse 17, you will not reject a broken, repentant heart, O God. Psalm 34 and verse 18.

The Lord is close to the broken hearted. He rescues those whose spirits are crushed. Psalm 34 and verse 18 God loves a broken spirit. Maybe that’s why God chooses the term father. And for our minds to be able to correlate to who he is. He uses the word father and dads moms. You know this too. You know what it’s like when when you’re in the other room and you hear your kid cry and not those annoying cries where you just want to yell shush back, but the one that you recognize is different from all the others because it’s a cry of pain. And he, as a parent goes to the alert, goes up, and also dive into that moment was to MIT is to provide that situation. Now as a as a dad sometimes. Hey! Stop that. That’s not where. But when there’s deep grieving. And deeper you. I mean, you just want to draw that child in. And be there in that moment. Comfort, whatever is bringing that struggle. It’s been said of God. Sometimes God calms the storm. But other times he calms the child who’s enduring the storm. I know when, uh, Levi’s got a game where he now because he. And he is Superman on the other end asking lads usually because of him. But sometimes he’s known this man. And so he’s learning beauty of really quick. The Lord lay not capable of knowing and eating right.

He hits the ground of hope and. And pain exists. And you know, what I can’t do in that moment is I can’t take away that pain. And I want it to be a life lesson, not to fall off something bigger. But I want to be there to calm him, let him know I care. In the beauty of the Lord. Is that this world has physical suffering and physical pain. But spiritually he can meet us in those moments to to strengthen us for what he has called us to in this world. When the psalmist says, the Lord. Instead of just God. Elohim. He’s us mailing the same perm back to our passage, but he’s using something specific about this God. He is a deliverer. He is a sustainer. He cares for what I am facing in this world. So much so that he comes into this world and gives his life to set me free from it. And his cause a declared that and he has all versions. Self persona. For us. The Summit Act gives us one final thought as he existences just dealing with the city of of the Seoul phone data on the truth beyond and emotions that are circumstances and seeking this God who is personal, but he he aligned this thought seeking its take it that for most mass seeking God for more than how it fits a season. I love the way that this Psalm ends, because in America, this is this is how I like to do my movies.

I like to show up to a movie, and I like it to have a beginning, a middle, and a conclusion where I when I walk out, everything’s buttoned up. When I watch that Lord of the rings stuff, it drives me crazy. I got to go back again. It’s like, that was a that was a horrible ending. It’s just all these non conclusions here. But but this Psalm ends that way. He says I will say to God my rock, why have you forgotten me? Why do I go mourning? Because of the oppression of the enemy as a shattering of my bones. My adversaries revile me while they say to me all day long, where is your God? Why are you in despair, O my soul? And why have you become disturbed within me? Hope in God, for I shall yet praise him, the help of my countenance and my God. It doesn’t matter data that he necessarily made a resolution to within exact problem. Also noticing. But can I be honest in saying. There is still a resolution. When we talk about the sorrow of our soul. And the pain we go through. And I say something this morning like. Um. Let’s get rid of the sorrow of our soul. How do we do that? The danger that we run risk into as people. Is that we begin to use God as a tool. And what I mean is, is if all you’re interested in is getting rid of your sorrow.

At the moment you get rid of your sorrow in whatever circumstance you’re facing is also the same moment you dump Jesus. Because the whole point of the sorrow wasn’t about the Lord to begin with. It was about you. And God didn’t create life to be about you. Now God cares about your sorrow. The point. The point is that in our sorrow, rather than just seek the end of sorrow, we need to do what the psalmist says. The solution may not meet the resolution right away. But what the psalmist is really saying is the resolution isn’t isn’t the sorrow that he’s going through the resolution is really the Lord. In all circumstances. Meet the Lord. So this is how it works for us in our lives. When we mask something that causes us great sorrow. We can get very ungod focused in it in the sense that we were having a positive feeling and we lost that. And and we want to have a good feeling again. And so I’m going to attack everything that’s out there until I have a good feeling. Right. I’m going to start after he or made me mad. Or what? This made me mad. And then. And I’ll come back to the not. What the psalmist says in the situation is, is what God desires is beyond just the circumstance. God design it for you to learn to walk with him in everything you build life.

It’s. It’s not about me. It’s about him. And so when something happens to me I don’t like, I don’t respond to the thing that I don’t like by saying, what can I do to make it better for me? What do I what do I do as I respond to the Lord and say, God, God, meet me right here. Because, God, I know I’m created for your glory. But here’s the benefit of knowing I’m created for your glory. That whatever you desire for your glory in this moment is better than what I’m going to do in my own strength anyway. And rather than making my sorrow my God or me, my God and my sorrow, I make the Lord and his glory God. And in the circumstances. I seek his face and I desire what he he desires for me so that I can meet this God who may calm the storm, but at least calms the child who’s enduring the storm. One of my favorite proverbs is Proverbs 14 and verse four. And this is the reason why it’s important for us to seek God for more than just a season. I’ll read this verse and I’ll describe it to what he’s saying here without oxen. A stable stays clean, but you need a strong ox for a large harvest. Um, in life. We all go through seasons. Ups and downs. Difficulties and successes.

As a child, you grew up and you start to learn. You write, you get an education. You figure out maybe what you want to do with your life as as you are educated and. And then you get a career and and maybe you’re you’re married and you have kids. Every one of these seasons are different for you. When? When you get married, you know that whatever that marriage was like on day one is not how it’s going to be like in year one. Matter of fact, day two or next hour. As people, you’re always changing when you have kids. What your kid did when he was two will not work when he’s four. Matter of fact, if he was an angel at two, he may be the devil. For you don’t know. Kids change, circumstances change. But in all of it. All of it. You need the Lord. This proverb is saying to us as people. When you think about an ox and you put it in a barn and you let it eat, naturally, the ox is going to do something and it’s going to be gross, and you’re going to need a shovel, right? In life, as a person, when you’re living life, the older you get, the tendency is more responsibility comes with age. That’s why we as parents love that toys R us song, right? I don’t want to grow up. I want to be a toys R us kid. When you think about, you think about growing up.

That comes with responsibility. A responsibility in which God’s glory needs to shine forth and should shine forth. That God has given you a life to enjoy. You can do it as a kid. Some of us already are right. We could pitch enjoy that database. But what he’s saying may be the more you accumulate a virtuous life, the more ox and incur in the stable and so bigger the shovel. You imagine if. And you start making a job, you get income, you got a house, you got a car, you’ve got insurances and responsibilities, you got illnesses, you got marriage, you got kids, you got grandkids, you got whatever. The longer you live life, the tendency is, the more responsibility comes out of that. And in all of it there are ups and downs. And the point of the psalmist is to say. It’s more than just seeking God in the circumstance or the season. But to stick with him in everything. In Proverbs 16 nine it says this the mind of man plans his ways, but the Lord directs his steps. When you make your plans in life. Plant them with an open hand before the Lord. Meaning you can say to God, God, this, this is where I think you desire for me to go. And what you desire for me to do. But, Lord, here. My five year plan. If if if it needs to change, it’s yours.

Because was to make circumstance on a scene. I’m seeking. If your goal in ending sorrow is just simply to end sorrow. My fear. My fear is that we do it devoid of the one who created us to experience joy in him. And the psalmist writes the psalm, recognizing that we can do that as people. We can make the solution to our problem about anything other than the Lord, because what we’re after is just to feel better. But what we don’t recognize in that moment, it’s that it’s the Lord who provides the strength. And so the psalmist in Psalm 42, by saying, you know, he doesn’t give us the resolution, he doesn’t tell us the end. He doesn’t even tell us everything got buttoned up, right, exactly how a movie should end. But what he says, it’s like the Lord of the rings shmygal could be anywhere. But his trust on the one. I’ll give some strength. Because he knows the Lord will provide. I will rest in his truth even when I’m heavy, because his truth endures and truth lasts beyond feelings, and right believing leads to healthy living. We live life personal with God, drawing near to him, knowing that he sustains us. He he is not just Elohim, he is Yahweh. He is Jehovah. He is Redeemer and sustainer. We live knowing that our adversity is seasonal. But Jesus sustains. And rather than come to him simply through circumstances, we just look to trust in him in everything that we go through. Because he is answer.

Restless Soul

Tortured Soul