By Simeon L. Young, Sr.
“If it’s not broke, don’t fix it” is another way of saying, “Just let well enough alone.” In other words, don’t tinker with something that’s already running smoothly. This famous one-liner is good advice for perfectionists for whom nothing is ever quite good enough. The flip side of this advice, “If it’s broke, fix it,” is good advice for people who ignore problems. These two opposite statements represent two extremes: micro-management on one hand, and no management on the other.
Some time ago when I was thinking about these two one-liners; I coined a phrase of my own: If it’s not fixed, break it. I’m referring, of course, to the heart. If your heart is not fixed, you need to break it.
When David said that his heart was fixed, he was talking about worship. He was saying that he had purposed in his heart that he would worship and praise God. David was saying that his heart was established, steady, unwavering, and steadfast in his determination to worship his God. He had made up his mind that he was going to sing and to give praise to God. Nothing could move him from that mind-set of worship. No trial, no fear, nor any other circumstance would be able to keep him from singing praises to God.
First, his heart was fixed on worship because he believed in God’s mercy. While David was running and hiding from Saul, he cried out to God for deliverance. He knew instinctively and experientially that all blessings flow out of the mercy of God. And so he didn’t ask God for help on the basis of his own goodness or spirituality. He appealed to the great mercy of God. He was determined to always and forever praise that merciful God.
What a motivation to praise God! The day God’s mercy runs out is the day we can stop praising Him.
Second, David’s heart was fixed on worship because he knew God was trustworthy. He said, “My soul trusteth in thee: yea, in the shadow of Thy wings will I make my refuge,” God’s “truth” here is His truthfulness, or His trustworthiness.
David felt safe, not because of the protective walls of the cave around him. Nor was it because of the guards at his side. He felt secure because of his trustworthy God. He knew that God was his protection. Though some would trust in horses and some would trust in chariots, he would remember the name of his God (Psalms 57:7). Since God is dependable, I should want my praise to be dependable. I want to be able to say with David, “My heart is fixed, 0 God, my heart is fixed: I will sing and give praise.”
Third, David’s heart was fixed on worship because he saw a better day. In verse 1 David said, “…until these calamities be overpast,” David believed that things would surely get better. By faith he refused to stew in his own juices. By faith he rejected the temptation to wallow in negativism and self-pity. By faith he saw beyond the mouth of the cave to a brighter and better day. And because of his faith in His faithful God-even in the midst of his misery-he purposed to praise God. Look beyond your present situation and say, since “I know that all things work together for good to them that love God, to them who are the called according to his purpose,” I’m determined to be a worshiper all the days of my life.
Fourth, David’s heart was fixed on worship because he recalled past deliverances. The past was a harbinger of a hopeful outcome in his present difficulties. The God who had helped him kill a lion and a bear would help him now. The God who had helped him to bring down Goliath would help him in this dark hour. Remembering past deliverances helped David fix his heart on praise and worship.
Has God ever healed you? Has He ever healed your child? Has He ever met your financial needs? Has He ever answered a desperate prayer for you? Remember the many times God has extended His grace to you. Call to mind the many times God has come through for you. Get your mind off the cave walls around you and begin to focus on past victories and deliverances.
Fifth, David’s heart was fixed on worship because he knew that God was bigger than his problems. In verses 4 and 5, he said, “My soul is among lions: and I lie even among them that are set on fire, even the sons of men, whose teeth are spears and arrows, and their tongue a sharp sword. Be thou exalted, 0 God, above the heavens; let thy glory be above all the earth.”
As David looked around him, he imagined that his enemies were ferocious and savage lions ready to pounce on him. He visualized those who were chasing him as being passionate in their red-hot anger. He felt threatened by people whose teeth looked like spears and arrows. He had the sensation of being surrounded by people whose tongues looked like dangerous swords.
It’s easy to let your imagination run wild when you’re tired and bewildered and afraid and sick. If you’re not careful, your imagination will make you think that your problems are bigger than your God.
When David looked beyond the lion-like adversaries surrounding him, he was encouraged. And when he looked beyond the spear-like teeth, he saw that God was on top of the situation. When he looked beyond the sword-like tongues, he understood that God was exalted above the heavens. And he understood that God was bigger than all his fearful imaginations.
We must understand that David didn’t utter these words about his heart being fixed when he was prospering. He was a fugitive hiding in a cave when he said, “My heart is fixed, 0 God, my heart is fixed: I will sing and give praise.” This was perhaps the lowest point in his life up until this time. He was convinced that Saul was bent on killing him. But even when his life was hanging by a thread and when his future was uncertain, David knew that he was going to praise his God as long as he had one breath left in his body. David had a heart for God; a heart for praise. But he also had had heart-breaking experiences which may have caused him to fix his heart on God.
It must have been heart-wrenching to be driven from his place in the palace where he entertained King Saul. It was even more heart-breaking to lose his fellowship with Jonathan, whom he loved as a brother. But it was perhaps these heart-breaking experiences which caused David to say, “Awake up, my glory; awake, psaltery and harp: I myself will awake early.”
Barnes Notes says, “The words awake up are equivalent to arouse; a solemn appeal to put forth all the powers of the soul.” Wake up mind; Wake up emotions; Wake up hands and arms; Wake up soul; Wake up and give praise and honor and glory to a merciful and trustworthy and exalted God.
The calamities of life are our spiritual wake-up calls. Sometimes we get spiritually drowsy. We drift off into slumber when it comes to worship and we need to be awakened.
Many of our public highways have ridges pressed into the shoulders so that if you nod off and drive onto the ridged shoulder you’ll hear and feel it and wake up instantly.
David was in a heart-rending predicament which awakened his slumbering soul to the need for getting refocused on praise. He said, “Awake up, my glory; awake, psaltery and harp: I myself will awake early.”
Wake up the “hallelujahs”, the “praise-the-Lords.” Wake up the hands for clapping unto the Lord. Wake up the sleeping feet for dancing before the Lord.
If a musical instrument won’t play, we fix it so it will play again. If your heart isn’t fixed on praising God, then allow the heart-breaking experiences of your life to be your wake-up call to fix your heart for renewed praise.
Article “If It’s Not Fixed, Break It” written by Simeon L. Young, Sr. is taken from The Louisiana Challenger.
This article may not be written by an Apostolic author, but it contains many excellent principles and concepts that can be adapted to most churches. As the old saying goes, “Eat the meat. Throw away the bones.”