I tend to memorize these little rules, and I think I'm right, but sometimes the rules change, and although I'm certain of my own correctness, I'm totally wrong. At least in certain contexts.
I was closing up my Bible after writing the last blog post, but I started reading Psalm 147, and it fit very nicely with what I just wrote and so I decided to add just a few more words to this line of thought.
God desires our worship, and when we focus on our own strengths, our own abilities, when we trust in ourselves instead of in God, we place ourselves and our own abilities above God.
Essentially this is idolatry. We tend to make little gods of ourselves, and we worship our own strength instead of God's power.
But God's not impressed with our strength. Psalm 147 tells us God's "pleasure is not in the strength of the horse." He doesn't delight "in the legs of a man."
Our strength and our intellect and our abilities don't astound him. After all, he made us.
No, "the Lord delights in the those who fear him, who put their hope in his unfailing love."
And so we learn to worship him. To give glory and honor to the One who made us, who "covers the sky with clouds, who supplies the earth with rain and makes grass grow on the hills" (v. 8). Seriously, it's not like we can make it rain, or even make the grass grow.
How good it is to sing praises to our God. It's not about the music, or even if we can sing. It's about praising him. Thanking him for all he has done. For all he will do.
Great is the Lord and mighty in power. His understanding, unlike mine, has no limit.
Lord, help us to see your glory.
Help us to see your greatness and to understand our dependence on you.