“Nevertheless I am continually with You; You hold me by my right hand. You will guide me with Your counsel, and afterward receive me to glory.” Psalm 73:23–24

One of the most dangerous habits of thought among Christians is to underestimate God. We underestimate His abilities, intent, and His awareness in our behalf. Psalm 73 is about very personal heart confusion when a Christian underestimates God. He looks at the ways of the world around him and sees a world upside down where evil goes unpunished (1–12). In fact, the wickedness of the world seems to produce prosperity, pride and persecution at the expense of the good. His heart calibration has slowly, but steadily, been ratcheted out of whack.

Verses 13–16 give utterance to the confusion of heart. The conflict rages within as the psalmist says, “when I thought how to understand this, it was too painful for me.” The key verse in the chapter is verse 17, “Until I went into the sanctuary of God; then I understood their end.” In the presence of God the scope of the Eternal One comes into view. Good will prevail, the righteous will be vindicated and wickedness will inevitably be punished. God’s nature specifies the recalibration tolerances for the saint.

I believe the rest of the chapter is designed to provide the reader with a window into the thinking of the repentant believer as God recalibrates him. Verses 21 and 22 spell out repentance, which prepares the psalmist to be recalibrated to the divine standard. Then the author lists four touch points which reset the heart upon appropriate parameters, in verses 23 and 24. Verses 25 through 26 review the personal blessings from God true for every believer which lift the heart of the faithful ever higher in exultation.

The first calibration mark is “but as for me, I am continually with You.” Do not dare to underestimate the power of the presence of God. “And the Lord, He is the One who goes before you. He will be with you, He will not leave you nor forsake you; do not fear nor be dismayed” (Deuteronomy 31:8). “Lo, I am with you always; even to the end of the age” (Matthew 28:26). “Let your conduct be without covetousness; be content with such things as you have, for He Himself has said, ‘I will never leave you nor forsake you.’ So we may boldly say: ‘The Lord is my Helper; I will not fear. What can man do to me?’” (Hebrews 13:5–6).

The second calibration mark is “You hold me by my right hand.” Do not dare to underestimate the power of the will of God. As when we were children and effectively forced to follow the direction of parental prerogative by a firm hold of our little hand, so God has a sure grip upon us and is insistently drawing us and prompting us along by His loving grasp.

The third calibration mark is “You will guide me with Your counsel.” Do not dare to underestimate the power of the clear wisdom of God. Wise parents reinforce their parenting with words of wisdom repeated throughout the upbringing, launching, and the remainder of their lifetime. It is a blessed child who can freely come back to the refreshing spring of wisdom from godly parents. God is the fountainhead of every refreshing spring of wisdom.

The fourth calibration mark is “and afterward receive me to glory.” Do not dare to underestimate the power of assurance of eternal life with God. Live with eternity’s values in view.

What causes heartbreak in your life? Can you identify the causes and your responses? Perhaps a recalibration is in order so that you can run true and not underestimate God. Trust and obey.