The Lord will perfect that which concerns me

As we begin to close out the merry month of June, the Verse of the Day for June 29, 2018 makes known something God will do:

Psalm 138:8 (NKJV):
The Lord will perfect that which concerns me; Your mercy, O Lord, endures forever; Do not forsake the works of Your hands.

This verse uses the term “perfect” as a verb and brings to mind a series of blog posts entitled “A Five-fold Prayer.” Pastor Rick Warren described what God is doing in perplexing situations that challenge our faith. In such instances, God specializes in bringing good out of bad, using problems to: “direct us; inspect us; correct us; protect us; perfect us.”

After hearing his comments, I took those five verbs and formed them into a request, a petition, a prayer to God for me. I asked God to become the initiator of the action, and I would become the object of his action. I also examined each of the verbs with scriptural illustrations from the Old Testament and New Testament and composed a prayer/psalm inspired by each verb at the end of each section related to each of the five verbs. In writing out my personal application of the scriptures, I also incorporated music related to the verbs as well. In Part 5 I ask God to “Perfect Me,” in the same way the Psalmist expects God to “perfect that which concerns me.”

Perfect:

In the Old Testament, as a verb the term means “to complete, to make full, perfect or entire; to finish.” Note the following verses:

II Chronicles 16:9

For the eyes of the LORD run to and fro throughout the whole earth, to show himself strong in the behalf of them whose heart is perfect toward him.

Psalm 37:37

Mark the perfect man, and behold the upright: for the end of that man is peace.

II Chronicles 16:9 and Psalm 37:37 comprise the lyrics to this song:

For the eyes of the Lord run to and fro,
For the eyes of the Lord run to and fro,
For the eyes of the Lord run to and fro,
Throughout the whole earth
To show Himself strong, to show Himself strong,
To show Himself strong in behalf of them
Whose heart is perfect toward Him.
The man with a perfect heart is whole and complete:
Mark the perfect man and behold the upright,
For the end of that man is peace.

In the New Testament, “perfect” is translated from the Greek word teleios—[adjective]–describing what has reached its end; complete, perfect, full, fully grown, wanting nothing, with special reference to the end for which it was intended. As a verb teleioo means—to complete, make perfect, so as to be full, wanting nothing, to bring to a full end. See how the term is used in following verses:

Hebrews 13:20-21:

20 Now the God of peace, that brought again from the dead our Lord Jesus, that great shepherd of the sheep, through the blood of the everlasting covenant,

21 Make you perfect in every good work to do his will, working in you that which is well-pleasing in his sight, through Jesus Christ; to whom be glory for ever and ever. Amen.

James 1:2-4 (NLT):

2 Dear brothers and sisters, when troubles of any kind come your way, consider it an opportunity for great joy. 3 For you know that when your faith is tested, your endurance has a chance to grow. 4 So let it grow, for when your endurance is fully developed, you will be perfect and complete, needing nothing

1 Peter 5:10 (NKJV):

10 But may the God of all grace, who called us to His eternal glory by Christ Jesus, after you have suffered a while, perfect, establish, strengthen, and settle you.

2 Corinthians 13:11:

Finally, brethren, farewell. Be perfect, be of good comfort, be of one mind, live in peace; and the God of love and peace shall be with you.

Perfect me

What I lack fulfill, that I may not come up short.
Bring to maturity any deficiency
That I may be perfect and entire, wanting nothing.
Make me perfect in every good work to do Your will.
May the inner spaces of my heart catch Your eye.
As you scan the vast landscape of this green planet,
May You see the perfect man You designed me to be.

We close with a musical rendering of Psalm 138:7-8: The Lord will perfect:

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