Around the Word in 365 Days, by Linda Sommer

The Wicked and the Just

Proverbs 24:15-16 Yesterday's reading spoke of the ultimate destruction of the wicked. The proverb for today speaks of what will happen to the wicked and the just. The wicked man falls into mischief. The just man may fall even seven times, but he will get up each time. The just man always rises again. The wicked, however, falls forever.

We thought yesterday about our heavenly Father holding our right hand as we cross the streets of this life. The reason why the just always keep getting up even though they may fall is simply because God is holding their right hand. The moment they fall, His strong right hand pulls them back up again.

One of my favorite scriptures is Psalm 37:23-24: "The steps of a good man are ordered by the Lord and He delights in his way. Though he fall, he shall not be utterly cast down; for the Lord upholds him with His hand."

Two images come to my mind as I read these verses. First, I see the Lord as the Good Shepherd. One of His sheep has rolled over on his back and cannot right himself because his wool is too heavy. The Good Shepherd comes and sets the little sheep on his feet again.

Another image was given to me by a speaker who shared a vision she had of the Lord. She shared that she had always pictured Jesus with His back turned toward her as she followed Him. One morning in prayer the Lord corrected her view, and she saw the Lord face to face with her. He was walking backwards with His arms outstretched as a loving father does when he is coaxing his one-year-old to take his first step. Jesus was ready to instantly catch her when she started to fall because His eyes were trained on her always. His strong arms were always outstretched to catch her.

Today you may feel flat on your back. Jesus your Good Shepherd is near you to set you on your feet again. You may feel you cannot take one more step because your burden is so heavy. Jesus is face to face with you, and the moment you feel so weak that you begin to stumble, He reaches out to you and lifts you up. He is the glory and the lifter of your head.

Lord, You know what I am going through right now. Forgive me for not trusting You with my burdens. I come to You this morning, and I know now You will lift my heavy burden and set me on solid ground.

READ: Isaiah 66:1-24; Philippians 3:4-21; Psalm 74:1-23; Proverbs 24:15-16

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