Psalm 100 1Make a joyful noise unto the LORD, all ye lands. 2Serve the LORD with gladness: come before his presence with singing. 3Know ye that the LORD he is God: it is he that hath made us, and not we ourselves; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture. 4Enter into his gates with thanksgiving, and into his courts with praise: be thankful unto him, and bless his name. 5For the LORD is good; his mercy is everlasting; and his truth endureth to all generations.
I am certain that the title of this devotional got your attention. However, the content of this devotional is really not about the folks that get on your last nerve, it’s about you (or shall I say US).
All of us have people in our lives that seem to ride up and down our nerves, so to speak. They seem to stretch our patience past what we think we can handle at the moment. If you’re involved in ministry this experience may seem to come often and you may find yourself in judgment of your fellow saints, critical of their motives and actions and even dissillusioned. We can be honest! Most of us know what that feels like. Unfortunately, out of our hearts and our mouths come comments and behavior that is not in line with our Savior’s character. Instead of longsuffering, grace, and patience for others, we really behave like children who can’t have things their way! We appear to be falling out on the floor in a fit of tantrum!
What do you do when folks get on your last nerve? You turn the attention from what they are or aren’t doing and you begin to praise the Savior for His grace and love toward you!
The Psalmist says to make a JOYFUL NOISE – serve the Lord with gladness, come before His presence with singing! Our response to difficult situations in our lives -incuding the actions of others – should always be PRAISE! Why? Because praise lets the Lord know that regardless of our feelings, our issues, our circumstances – we praise Him for His lovingkindness in spite of! It allows the Lord to see how mature we are in the faith – that we know that ALL things in our lives are working together for our good! We recognize that HE IS GOD, that He has made us (and the folks on our last nerve!) that we are to behave as His people – as sheep following their Shepherd!
He requires our thanksgiving, our praise, because HE IS GOOD! And his MERCY is everlasting! We must understand that if we are to look like Him, if we are to be like Him, we must be merciful! Surely we understand that it doesn’t mean that folks won’t ever again get on your last nerve -but when and if they do – turn the table on yourself. Look yourself in the mirror- and when you glance at your own idiosyncracies, your own shortcomings – it should cause you to throw your hands up and make a Joyful noise! Truly you aren’t worthy of the longsuffering and blessings the Lord bestows on you each and every day – so stop being judgmental, stop pointing your finger, stop complaining about what others are or are not doing. Leave those people up to the Lord and carry out your days serving the Lord with gladness!