Monday Encouragement

The fear of the Lord is the beginning of wisdom; all those who practice it have a good understanding”–Psalm 111:10.
My Beloved Brothers and Sisters in the Lord,
The words quoted from above, taken from Psalm 111, are normally associated with Proverbs 1:7, which are virtually identical.  In Proverbs, the word “knowledge” is found rather than “wisdom,” but the meaning is the same. To “fear the Lord” is the essence and fountain of true “wisdom.” Of course, in the Bible the term “wisdom” is not used as an intellectual category, but as a moral and spiritual one. Those who trust and love the Lord are wise, and those who reject Him are fools.
But to get down a little deeper into this memorable phrase from God’s Word, we need to explore this “fear of the Lord” a little more.  The essential meaning of “fear” is not only that of being aware of the greatness and sovereignty of God, but of humble submission to His divine authority.  This is why the author of Psalm 111 can also tell us that those who “practice” this “fear” are people of “understanding.”
Have you ever thought about practicingthe fear” of God?  Yes, I know, it’s a concept that is strange to our ears!  So what does this mean, and how can we find our Monday encouragement here in these inspired words?
Doubtless, you’ve heard the old expression, ‘marching to the beat of a different drummer.’  We use it to comment on the driving principle in someone’s choices and behaviors.  That inner ‘drummer’ supplies the direction of one’s life as it beats out its rhythm in literally thousands of decisions one makes each day.  And there are any number of ‘drummers’ sounding out their patterns in the lives of people all over this world, including Christians as well.  Some people, for example, do what they do because they are moved by pride and vanity, others hear the beat of materialism, while still others are dancing to the repetitive, thumping sounds of the approval or affirmation of someone else.  You get the picture.
So what the psalmist is saying is that those who are wise in the eyes of the Lord, in the truest and most profound way, are those who are moved to do what they do by their personal apprehension of the majesty, glory, sovereignty, and goodness of their God!  This is what it is to “practice,” or live practically as controlled by, “the fear of the Lord.”
This reverential awe of the Lord, which fills the hearts of the wise (those redeemed by Christ, and indwelt by His Spirit), moves them in a definite, new direction. And this life-trajectory is in accordance with what is good, what is true, what is holy, and what is worthy of pursuit because it is submissive and obedient to the infallible Word of the only One who is worthy of such reverence and worship!  Contrariwise, the foolish person is the one who listens to another sound, is moved by it in another direction, and, as a sad consequence, makes daily choices and lives accordingly.
Now here is our encouragement.
Because you have Christ in your heart, you have the One who is the very Wisdom of God living in you!  As the Apostle Paul said,
but to those who are called, both Jews and Greeks, Christ the power of God and the wisdom of God . . . . And because of Him you are in Christ Jesus, who became to us wisdom from God” (1 Cor. 1:24, 30).
The ‘Divine Drummer,’ the Spirit of the Lord Jesus Christ, is beating out His holy rhythm in your heart. He inhabits you, He teaches you the Word, He causes you to hunger and thirst for righteousness, and He makes your way through life a straight one that glorifies your Father in heaven!  And as you look to Him today, He will surely guide you into all of His truth, make your way prosperous in His sight, and, in the end, bring you safely home!
So today, put this holy “fear” into practice!  As the Scripture says it elsewhere, “In all your ways, acknowledge Him and He will make your straight your paths”!
I love you all so much!
PS: Next up Psalm 115