“SURELY GOD IS GOOD TO ISRAEL, TO THOSE WHO ARE PURE IN HEART. BUT AS FOR ME, MY FEET HAD ALMOST SLIPPED; I HAD NEARLY LOST MY FOOTHOLD. FOR I ENVIED THE ARROGANT WHEN I SAW THE PROSPERITY OF THE WICKED.”
– PSALM 73:1-3
There are a lot of highly relatable passages from the Psalms. This particular psalm, from a man named Asaph, describes the disappointment of seeing people who do terrible things but have great lives. We can relate. There are people all around who are not just non-Christians, but people who are downright awful–-they cheat and lie and swindle–-and live in prosperity. People who have no respect for others get ahead at work; they often go further in business situations, and they frequently live without worrying about their needs being met. Meanwhile, we are praying to God to stay afloat, and sometimes we wonder if He’s even listening.
If we’re not careful, we begin to wonder where we’ve gone wrong. Are we doing this right? Is following God even worth it? Why do I have struggles when they don’t? Our feet begin to slip as we question things we once felt sure of.
This line of thinking can take us to dark places, but there is hope amid the darkness. For one thing, even though we see a lot of bad people doing well, we often are not seeing people who have done bad things that come back to bite them. In fact, I would say most times when people do sinister things to get ahead, they wind up in a bad place. Sometimes it’s just harder for us to see that.
That’s nice to know, but the real hope is found in what God has in store for us eternally. Regardless of how prosperous we are in this life, God has plans to prosper His people far beyond their wildest dreams. Those who are
faithful to Him will be in His presence one day, singing praises and being free of concerns about earthly success. It may not get us a promotion, a raise, or a deal, but serving God makes us better people. It moves us to improve the world around us, it spurs us on to do good and stand up for what is right, and it allows us to tell of His greatness through our actions.