God is good to Israel, to those who are pure in heart. Psalm 73:1 (NIV)
This psalm begins with a statement of faith. It was like a credal statement, the sort of thing you would recite every week at worship.
It is rather like us confessing “Jesus is Lord” when we meet for worship. “God is good to Israel, to those who are pure in heart.”
Asaph says, “This is what I had always believed. This is what I had built my life upon. This is the faith of God’s people, but I have to tell you that ‘as for me, my feet had almost slipped’” (73:2).
So, if Asaph had been a New Testament believer, his story would have begun something like this: “Jesus is Lord! But you need to know I almost lost it. My feet almost slipped. I nearly lost my faith. I almost gave up my ministry. I nearly lost my foothold. I was almost gone. And I want to tell you my story of how God turned me around.”
Every Sunday, as Christians confess faith in Christ together, there are some folks who are right where Asaph was. You don’t find it easy to sing. You struggle to focus on the Word. You hear the faith confessed, but your mind is pounding with questions—“Yes, but… and what about…”
Your faith that once was strong now seems to hang by a slender thread. What is wonderfully real for other people seems strangely distant from you. You say to yourself, “You know, I could quite easily walk away from this altogether.” If that’s where you are today, Asaph was right there too.
On a scale of 1 (I have no idea what this is like) to 10 (I’m right where he was), can you relate to Asaph’s experience?