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Dear Partner,

We are hearing a lot today about economic recession. It is on the news all the time and I also hear it in the conversations of many people. No doubt there are seasons of better and worse economic times. As Christians we should always live according to scriptural teachings to be hard working, honest, frugal, yet generous people. But we are also admonished to never live in fear of natural circumstances.

1 Pet 5:6-7   Humble yourselves therefore under the mighty hand of God, that he may exalt you in due time: Casting all your care upon him; for he careth for you.

That is real easy to teach and preach, but “living” that verse requires a trust in the Lord that sometimes takes years to fully develop. I remember in the early days of my walk with the Lord that one of the verses I spent hours and hours meditating and confessing was this one from the Old Testament:

Psa 34:10   The young lions do lack, and suffer hunger: but they that seek the LORD shall not want [Hebrew word = lack] any good thing.

Think about a young lion in the prime of life. We don't call him the "king of the jungle" for nothing. God has endowed the lion with sharp teeth, powerful legs and hips that enable it to spring upon its prey undetected. His hunting instincts are beyond compare. If any animal on earth should be able to provide for its own needs it is the young lion. But scripture declares that sometimes even the young lion will lack and suffer hunger. Most likely it was not the lion's fault. Perhaps there was a drought or a fire that caused famine in the land. The point is, based upon self reliance alone; there is no guarantee against suffering lack.

The verse continues with this astounding promise, “They that seek the Lord shall not lack any good thing.” Not just the young and vigorous like the lion, but also the elderly and grey-headed will not suffer lack if they seek the Lord. (At age 61 now, a smile comes over my face as I realize this promise is more and more important to me every year.) It seems the all important factor is whether or not you are truly “seeking the Lord.” What does that mean?

Sadly, most of the Christian teaching on TV today stresses only one aspect regarding seeking the Lord and that is our giving. In great detail they pull out every verse in the bible that says to give and they focus on that one aspect as though it was the most important thing of all. Well, having a generous nature is important. But there is much more to seeking the Lord than just our giving. Let’s stay in context and look at some of the things mentioned in Psalm 34.

Psalm 34:1   … I will bless the LORD at all times: his praise shall continually be in my mouth.

Notice the emphasis of praising the Lord with the “mouth.” One way to seek the Lord is to always speak blessing to Him at all times … the good times and the bad. Normally when bad times come, people begin speaking words that line up with the bad circumstances. That is not how to seek the Lord.

Psalm 34:8   O taste and see that the LORD is good: blessed is the man that trusteth in him.

This verse is saying almost identically the same thing that Peter said in the first verse quoted in this letter. We are to TRUST the Lord. That means casting all of our care upon Him, for He cares for us. It is not trust to always spend our time in worry during a recession like the heathen do. Of course they should worry. They have no God like ours. Trust does not worry.

Psa 34:12-13   What man is he that desireth life, and loveth many days, that he may see good? Keep thy tongue from evil, and thy lips from speaking guile.

In the same psalm, again there is emphasis on the tongue and the lips. If we let worry and fear flow from our mouth all of the time over the "recession," how is that keeping our tongue from evil and our lips from speaking guile? Praise to our God, our Lord, our Provider should CONTINUALLY flow from our lips. In this psalm we learn that "seeking the Lord" has much to do with what we meditate upon in our hearts and what we speak with our mouths. Not just in times of worship, but in our daily lives as we are being salt and light in a dark world.

Psa 34:12-13 What man is he that desireth life, and loveth many days, that he may see good? Keep thy tongue from evil, and thy lips from speaking guile.

Sue and I love you and appreciate you. We thank God for your generous and giving heart. God bless you!

Your friend and co-laborer,

Gary Carpenter


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