God of the “Even So”

Daily Reflection / Produced by The High Calling
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Even so, he pitied them in their distress and listened to their cries.

Psalm 106:44

As you know if you’ve been reading these Daily Reflections for a while, during the weekdays I focus on a certain book of Scripture, with the hope of eventually reflecting my way through the whole Bible. Right now we’re making our way through the opening chapters of Jeremiah. Then, on the weekend, we turn our attention to the Psalms. At this pace, we complete a “lap” of the Psalms every year and a half.

Today, the themes of our psalm fit neatly with the themes of Jeremiah. These themes have to do with the unfaithfulness of God’s people. Though God had been abundantly gracious to them, they chose to reject him, to worship idols, and to wallow in injustice. Through Jeremiah, the Lord warned his people of pending judgment. In Psalm 106, that judgment has taken place. God handed the Jews “over to pagan nations” so that they were finally “destroyed by their sin” (106:41-43).

Yet that is not the end of the story. Why not? Because of God’s nature and purpose. As Psalm 106:44 reads, “Even so, he pitied them in their distress and listened to their cries.” Yes, God had judged his people. Yes, they got what they deserved (actually much less than they deserved). “Even so,” God was still a God of grace. “Even so,” God continued to “see” his people in their distress. “Even so” God cared for his people in their captivity (106:46). Thus, on the basis of God’s faithfulness, and mercy, the Psalmist and his people, cried out, “Save us, O LORD our God! Gather us back from the nations, so we can thank your holy name and rejoice and praise you” (106:47).

We have experienced the “even so” of God in his treatment of us. Though we were sinners, even so, Christ died for us (Rom. 5:8). Though we were dead in our sins, even so, God, “who is so rich in mercy", made us alive with Christ (Eph. 2:4-5). When we mess up our lives because of our selfishness, even so God does not abandon us. Yes, our behavior might very well lead to painful consequences, but, even so, God is with us, using what we have meant for evil to bring about his purposes and our growth.

How blessed we are to be in relationship with the God of “even so”!

QUESTIONS FOR REFLECTION: When have you experienced the “even so” of God’s grace? How does God’s “even so” help us not to sin even more?

PRAYER: Gracious, merciful God, you are indeed the God of “even so.” When your people consistently rebelled against you, rejecting your words of encouragement and warning, and in effect rejecting you, you finally let them have what their actions deserved. They suffered the judgment you had warned them about for so long. Yet you were not done with them. Your “even so” prevailed as you continued to care for them.

And so you have done with me, time and time again. Your “even so” brought me to the point of confessing my sin to you and receiving you as my Savior and Lord. Your “even so” delivered me from so many messes I have made for myself. How I thank you for your mercy! How I thank you for not giving me what I deserve, but so very much better than I deserve!

O Lord, may my gratitude for your “even so” motivate me to live in your ways and for your glory. May I never presume upon the “even so” of your grace, but instead live in the freedom of that grace.

All praise be to you, God of the “even so”! Amen.