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Plows of Pain

Verse 3 is a vivid description of personal suffering: "The plowers plowed on my back; they made their furrows long." Many other pictures of personal suffering are found in the Word of God: going through the storm, going through the furnace, going through a battle and carrying a burden. Why would the psalmist use plowing as a picture of personal suffering?

For one thing, he felt as if people were treating him like dirt. They were saying, "You're just like a dirty field, and we're going to plow right up this field, and we don't care how you feel." If we live for Jesus, we can expect people to treat us the way they treated Him. They treated Him like dirt.

The central truth in this picture is that plowing is preparation for a harvest. When people are treating you like dirt, when the plows of criticism and accusation dig in your back, remember: God is preparing you for a harvest. What kind of a harvest? That depends on the kind of seed you plant. If you plant seeds of revenge and hatred and malice, saying, "I'll get even with them someday," the harvest will be bitter. But if you plant the seeds of the Word of God, letting love and peace and patience reign in your heart, you can say with the psalmist that the Lord is righteous--He will resolve this problem. Then the harvest will be one of blessing, as in verse 8: "The blessing of the Lord be upon you; we bless you in the name of the Lord!"

* * *

If you want a harvest in your life, you must plow, plant and water. When people treat you like dirt, when the trials of life go right through your life like a plow, get ready for the harvest. God has a harvest of blessing for you today, so remember to plant the right seed.

Baker Books, a division of Baker Publishing Group ( Used by permission. All rights to this material are reserved. Material is not to be reproduced, scanned, copied, or distributed in any printed or electronic form without permission from Baker Publishing Group.

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