May God Be Gracious to Us and Bless Us–Psalm 67:1-7
1 May God be gracious to us and bless us
and make His face shine on us—
2 so that Your ways may be known on earth,
Your salvation among all nations.
3 May the peoples praise You, God;
may all the peoples praise You.
4 May the nations be glad and sing for joy,
for You rule the peoples with equity
and guide the nations of the earth.
5 May the peoples praise You, God;
may all the peoples praise You.
6 The land yields its harvest;
God, our God, blesses us.
7 May God bless us still,
so that all the ends of the earth will fear Him.
Verse 4 of Psalm 67 states a particularly important fact about God: “…You rule the peoples with equity and guide the nations of the earth.”
God is not only in control of all things, He is also fair and just. It may not always feel like it, especially from our limited understanding, but it is indeed divine truth. We humans have an ingrained sense that if we don’t understand something (i.e., what’s happening in the world around us or in our own lives), then something must be wrong. But when we know our Lord and what He says, then we can also know that this “feeling” is not always the truth. God knows exactly what is going on at all times. And He promises us that we can trust Him. Our Christian faith was never built upon an understanding of all things. To the contrary, our faith’s foundation is believing in God and His Word. Trusting Him completely and understanding simply that His ways are higher than our own (Is. 55:8-9).
The best thing we can do in times of uncertainty and unrest is pray and praise. When times were tough for the psalmist, that’s exactly what he did: “May God be gracious to us and bless us and make His face shine on us—so that Your ways [Lord] may be known on earth, Your salvation among all nations. May the peoples praise You, God; may all the peoples praise You” (v 1-3). Just like God responded with favor and victory to faith, prayer and praise in our forefathers’ time, so will He respond with favor and victory in ours. “May the peoples praise You, God; may all the peoples praise You. The land [finally] yields its harvest; God, our God, blesses us” (v 5-6).
When we accept that God is in control at all times, and that He is fair and equal in all His dealings both earthly and spiritual, life’s unpredictable and perplexing circumstances become far less stressful and much more tolerable. We release our tight grip on having to know and make sense out of (and control!) every last detail, and instead give all things to God. When we do, when we surrender and trust Him instead of ourselves, we are then (finally) able to relax and experience His peace (Phil. 4:6-7). We can rest in the promise that God has our best interest at heart. That no matter how things appear today, in the end, He will make all things right for those who love Him (Rom 8:28).
Prayer: “Lord, instead of me magnifying the problems in my life — that which I do not understand — help me to magnify You instead. Help me to praise You always and endlessly for Your undeserved grace, mercy, and Wisdom in my life. And in all my ways, Lord, help me to acknowledge You. It is You and You alone Who will make my paths straight. Amen.” (Prov. 3:6).