Friday, January 16, 2015

Psalm 22

"My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?!"  The Psalmist said it, Jesus quoted it.  We have all felt it.  There are times when we are broken, we are all out of joint, our hearts feel like wax within us and we can not seem to find the peace, the comfort, the strength of God.  We look around and we see nothing, no one.  We feel forsaken, abandoned, left to die, far from God.  We feel as if our cries go unheard, especially when God does not come rushing in scooping us us and make us feel all better.  Day after day, we trudge through, weak, despondent, so alone, so tired, so far gone, that there seems there is no way back.
When we are honest with ourselves and with God, even the best of us, all of us have all been there, some have spent more time in this place than others.  (some of us would deny even wanting to think such thoughts)  There are moments, days, years, seasons of our lives when the brokenness of the world around us and the darkness seems to consume us.
But we can still trust, that even when we feel alone, we are not, even when we rage against God for leaving us and abandoning us, we are not abandoned.  
God is still there, God is still king of creation, we are never left to our sorrow, our pain, our weariness, our brokenness, even when we are trudge through the dark valleys we are not ever a long.  God is there working with us, giving us what we need to  make it through.  

Friday, January 9, 2015

Psalm 131

My heart is not lifted up.  Oh how honest the Psalmist is.  Sometimes my heart is not lifted up.  Whether by lifted up the Psalmist means that the heart is not happy or filled with joy, or whether it means that the heart isn ot given up to God, not uplifted, with praise to God.  Eitherr way the Psalmist is oh so honest.  Not happy, not filled with joy not up to praising God.  
I think we have all been there.   There are times. The stress of the day is too much.  The events of the week weigh heavy upon us.  Too much sorrow, too much pain, too much bear. We find ourselves surrounded by what seems to be an impenatrible darkness There are valleys through which we walk where we find it hard to lift up our hearts, or we find that our hearts can not be lifted, they are heavey within our chest.  We feel lost, we feel alone and praising God is far from within our grasp.  We can not, we are unable, perhaps we are even at a point where we will not.  We are just not there.

But we can rest in the Lord, we can be be nourished, protected,  taken care of.  The Lord, draws us close to his breast.  In our fear, in our sorrow, in our pain the Lord does not turn to us and say, "suck it up."  "deal with it"  The Lord does not berate us for our lack of faith, our lack of praise, does not see it as a failing.
Instead the Lord draws us up, holds us close, gives us what we need, like a mother responding to the shrill cries of an infant child, lovingly draws us close.  Held close, protected, we are able to be like a milk drunk child, filled, cared for, protected.  
We can hope in the Lord.  Even when we can not lift up our hearts, are unable to lift them up.  In our pain, in our sorrow, in our darknes, our hope can be found in the Lord.

Trust, rely, be nourished, protected and cared for. 
Let me hope in the Lord, trust in the Lord, be cared for, nourished.  Let me  be a milk drunk child resting contently on God's chest.

Saturday, January 3, 2015

Psalm 68 - Bearing God's Justice

Psalm 68
The Lord God is our salvation, the one who brings up, the one who settles the solitary, brings rest to the weary, takes care of the widow, bring rain to the parched land, restores the broken, and sets the prisoner free.  God  is in the business of setting right the wrongs.  There is famine, there is drought, there are those who are unjustly imprisoned, those who find themselves lacking, without anyone to whom they can turn, captives and those misused by others and the systems in our society, but there is hope.  God is in the business of setting things right.
But beware the Psalmist tells us, the unjust will be brought to justice, those who misuse other, to take captives, who ignore the widow and are participants in the breaking and misusing of others, God is also in the business of putting right those who are doing the wrong.  Justice will come, recompense and shall we say just desserts.  There are those who will find themselves on the wrong end of God's justice.  There are those who will suffer when God sets things right, those who ARE the wrong, are participating, perpetuating the wrong, they will be brought to justice
The question is who am I?  Am I perpetuating an unjust system?  Am I misusing others?  Am I apart of the wrong which needs to be set right?
Or am I on God's side.  Am I joining God as God works to make things right?  Am I lifting up the downtrodden?  Am I helping the widow and the orphan?  And I attempting to bring justice where there is none?
I can join God or I can not.  But the question still stands which side of God's justice will I find myself as God works to make all things right in this worls?