He was a worship leader. Maybe on the outside things looked good, but on the inside… no, no, not so much. In fact, on the inside, he was in great sadness, distress and aguish. He was going through the ringer, and he had some serious questions for he was walking in the unknown footsteps of God.
We will get back to our study in the Gospel of John in a few weeks, but this is week we continue talking about ruling over our emotions. Our emotions, they are not a bad thing, God gave them to us. But God wants us to walk by faith and not by sight nor by emotions for they can take us to the mountaintop or they can take us to the deepest, darkest valley. So we must rule over our emotions if we are to walk by faith.
So today we come to Psalms 77. I cried out to God with my voice and He gave ear to me. In the day of my trouble I sought the Lord; my hand was stretched out in the night without ceasing; my soul refused to be comforted. I remembered God, and was troubled; I complained, and my spirit was overwhelmed. You hold my eyelids open; I am so troubled that I cannot speak. I have considered the days of old, the years of ancient times. I call to remembrance my song in the night; I meditate within my heart, and my spirit makes diligent search.
Here was Asaph; a director of music during the reign of King David and King Solomon, and his soul was troubled. He was sad. He was in anguish. He prayed night and day yet he couldn’t find any rest, the answers just were not coming. He wanted God to get him out this terrible situation. But it was all in vain for he wrote I remembered God and was troubled. He remembered God, and God seemingly did nothing to better his plight. Soon the questions began to arise. Will the Lord cast off forever? And will He be favorable no more? Has His mercy ceased forever? Has His promise failed forevermore? Has God forgotten to be gracious? Has He in anger shut up His tender mercies? This was the deep and dark valley for Asaph. Where was God when he needed God the most? But Asaph didn’t understand everything was under control for God was making a way where there seemed to be no way. Asaph was walking in the unknown footsteps of God.
In mark chapter 14 Jesus also wrestled with his emotions just hours before his crucifixion. Then they came to a place which was named Gethsemane; and He said to His disciples, “Sit here while I pray.” And He took Peter, James, and John with Him, and He began to be sore mazed and deeply distressed. Then He said to them, “My soul is exceedingly sorrowful, even to death. Stay here and watch.” He went a little farther, and fell on the ground, and prayed that if it were possible, that the hour might pass from Him. And He said, “Abba, Father, all things are possible with you. So if it be possible take this cup away from Me; nevertheless, not my will, but Thy will be done.” Then while hanging upon the cross of Calvary, just moments before His death He cried out My God, My God why hast thou forsaken me.
Here was the humanity of Jesus on full display. The shock of what was about to happen, all those emotions, the sorrow, the distress and the anguish began racing through his body as he contemplated His death upon the cross for the sin of all mankind. Then while His precious blood ran down His body and dropped on the ground below the cross He cried out My God, My God, why have you forsaken me? Jesus in His humanity had to rule over His emotions that He might accomplish His purpose upon this earth, his death, burial and resurrection that all of mankind might be saved.
Emotions are a part of life, but we must be careful how we respond to our emptions. We can’t run and hide from our emotions. We can’t sleep away our emotions. They should motivate us into the right direction, to do the right things, to do the necessary things. Some of those things maybe unpleasant and hard and seemingly impossible but God has a purpose for it all. Towards the end of Psalms 77 Asaph wrote, Thy way is in the sea, Thy path is in the great waters and Thy footsteps are unknown.