Standing Alone (Psalm 12)

Psalm 12

Help, O Lord, for there is no longer anyone who is godly;
    the faithful have disappeared from humankind.
They utter lies to each other;
    with flattering lips and a double heart they speak.

May the Lord cut off all flattering lips,
    the tongue that makes great boasts,
those who say, “With our tongues we will prevail;
    our lips are our own—who is our master?”

“Because the poor are despoiled, because the needy groan,
    I will now rise up,” says the Lord;
    “I will place them in the safety for which they long.”
The promises of the Lord are promises that are pure,
    silver refined in a furnace on the ground,
    purified seven times.

You, O Lord, will protect us;
    you will guard us from this generation forever.
On every side the wicked prowl,
    as vileness is exalted among humankind. (Psalm 12:1-8, Common English Bible).

I am the quintessential extrovert. I do not like being alone. I can do it, but I really prefer being around other people, at least most of the time. There have been many days during my years in ministry that Cindy would come home from work and I would say, “Don’t get comfortable. Let’s go walk around the mall.” You can substitute “the mall” for something else but on those days, I need to be around people.

We often think being an introvert means you really don’t want to talk, your quiet, shy, the list could go on. On the other hand extroverts like me are loud, in your face, and we want to talk to everybody.

While those characteristics and others, are often present, that is not the definition of introvert or extrovert a seminary professor gave us while I was in school.

According to the good professor, it is a matter of, where do you get your energy. If being in a crowd of people, regardless of whether the group is loud or quiet, if you are an extrovert, you thrive, at least most of the time because you are around other people.

An extrovert gets energy from people and being alone saps his or her strength. Extroverts are in crowded places that may be quiet but the extrovert still gains energy from it. For an extrovert college student, the scene may be a quiet in a lecture hall full of students and then be the life of the frat party. He or she will thrive in both environments.

Obviously, the opposite applies to introverts. They might tell me, “Go home and call me on the phone.” They don’t want to be in a crowd. It is easier to deal with loud-mouthed me, without have to deal with the people around me.

We really don’t know if the psalmist was an introvert or an extrovert. The psalm is credited to David. I think he was most likely an introvert. What we do know for sure is, based on Scripture, David spent significant time alone. As a boy he was a shepherd, quite possibly the definition of a loner. When he was older he was always having to look over his shoulder. In fear for his life David had to hide from Saul. As for David’s life after Saul, the old cliche, “It’s lonely at the top fits well.

There are extroverts in the Bible. Peter is that loud in your face kind of guy. He was always ready to jump feet first to an action. I can’t think of a single time that Peter was alone.

Anyone in either case can be a Christian and be an introvert or an extrovert. It is really about people.

I think David would tell us one more thing. I found several quotes about standing alone but I am going to only share one with you today: “Stand up for what is right even if it means standing alone,”

Have a blessed day in the Lord.

Seeking the Genuine,
Keith

Copyright 2020, J. Keith Broyles, all rights reserved
Permission is granted, for the non-commercial use of this post

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Published by drjkbroyles

I love Mike Ashcraft's book, "My One Word." For the past nine years I have participated and encouraged others to participate to in the "My One Word" Challenge. My first word was discipline was my word the first year. Since then my word has been focus, sight, jungle, peace, concentration, serve, genuine and this year is fit. I seek to be fit for my health, my family, my church, my ministries. I seek to be fit in any are of my life where God might point to me. I also have a nickname, "Dr. B." When I was a public high school teacher, Dr. B. is what most of my students called me, at least in my presence. I am still called that by many people though I no longer teach in public schools. I am the author of "Average Joe: With an Extraordinary Story" (available on Amazon). The book fits into the genre of "Biblical Fiction" or "Christian Fiction" and features some of the Bible's lesser known characters. The name of my blog is, "Fork in the Road." Life is filled with forks in the road. It isn't a matter of if we encounter a fork in the road, but when will we and how many will we experience in a lifetime. I love to strum my guitar. I am not a great guitar player but I enjoy it. I also enjoy writing music. I get excited with I feel a new song emerging. I live with my wife Cindy and our little dog, "Bishop" in Lufkin, Texas. I spent the past 30 years as a United Methodist pastor, serving churches all over east and southeast Texas, from just north of Tyler to south of Houston, from the Gulf Coast to east of Madisonville. I currently serve Perritte Memorial UMC in Nacogdoches. I spent one year in the classroom, teaching High School government, economics, psychology, and sociology. Cindy and I have been married for 43 years. We have two grown sons and six grandchildren, three boys and three girls. I enjoy preaching and all it's aspects from research to writing to the actual preaching event. I also love writing, reading. I have dabble in drawing and "painting" with pastels as well as woodworking and woodcarving. My current projects are two ukuleles. I collect, repair and restore guitars too. I play the guitar (badly, but I still do) I also enjoy working with paracord on various projects, mostly prayer ropes I usually give away. I hold an Associate of Applied Science Degree in Business Data Processing, from San Jacinto College in Pasadena, TX, a Bachelor of Science in Political Science with a minor in History from Sam Houston State University in Huntsville, TX, a Master of Divinity from Southern Methodist University in Dallas, TX and a Doctor of Ministry from Carolina University of Theology. This blog started out as devotional writings. In August of 2020, I made a major change to the blog, switching to a daily theme format. Sunday Sermon-usually my manuscript sermon Miscellaneous Monday-misc. writing, poetry, ministry Tuesday Thoughts-Devotion Wed. with Wesleys-hist. & theol. of early Methodists TED Talk Thursday-Video & appl. in current theology Five for Friday-5 things I've seen & my thoughts Sing-Along Sat. - Usually a new song I have written I write, "Strumming a G-Chord with Dr.B." to get my thoughts onto something permanent. After all, they say, once something is on the internet it never really goes away. Still, I hope you enjoy reading it. Who knows, it might generate a bit of discussion between you and me and anyone else who might make their way here. Seeking the Genuine, Keith Lufkin, Texas August 2020

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