Going Deeper 6-19-19

The Psalm for Pentecost 2...
Psalm 22:19-28   But you, O Lord, do not be far away!  O my help, come quickly to my aid!  Deliver my soul from the sword, my life from the power of the dog!  Save me from the mouth of the lion!  From the horns of the wild oxen you have rescued me.  I will tell of your name to my brothers and sisters; in the midst of the congregation I will praise you: You who fear the Lord, praise him!  All you offspring of Jacob, glorify him; stand in awe of him, all you offspring of Israel!  For he did not despise or abhor the affliction of the afflicted; he did not hide his face from me, but heard when I cried to him.  From you comes my praise in the great congregation; my vows I will pay before those who fear him.  The poor shall eat and be satisfied; those who seek him shall praise the Lord.  May your hearts live forever!  All the ends of the earth shall remember and turn to the Lord; and all the families of the nations shall worship before him.  For dominion belongs to the Lord, and he rules over the nations.

One Bible professor likens Psalms of "Lament" such as this one as being much like the music genre we like to call "The Blues."  Here's what she wrote: "Lament is like the blues, a tenacious articulation of reality insisting, even demanding, resolution.  Laments, like the blues, can make intimate friends of strangers, awakening us to our shared experiences of humanity: vulnerability, love, loss, ecstasy, anguish, and everything in between.  Like the blues, lament is a language of faith, an assertion of reality rooted in hope.  Though we are lonely, we are not alone.  Though we cry out to God from the depths of our true feelings, God hears us and is present with us."

We all, individually and collectively, have times and seasons in our lives when we're "singing the blues."  There are times when bad news, broken relationships, hardships, and trials of various kinds cause us to feel fearful or melancholy, or even bring about bouts of deep sadness and depression.  It is healthy to express our emotions and Psalms like this one can give us the words we need.

As children of God, we can navigate through the storms of life differently.  Not easily, and not always smoothly, but differently.  For one thing, we do not go through hard times alone but have the support of our church community.  Also, we know that we can express whatever we may be feeling to our Abba and our Savior, who not only hears our prayers but knows how we are feeling.  They, too, have had Their hearts broken, and have suffered in all of the same ways we might suffer.  

And when we place our pain and suffering into God's hands, we can experience a peace that passes understanding.  Not only are we releasing all things into God's care, we know that God can make all things work together for good... according to His will and His ways.  We understand that God has always proven to be caring and faithful, and has promised to never leave us or forsake us.

With You in His Peace,

Mark Gabbert, Pastor
Zion Lutheran Church
Wellington, Colorado

"No one cares how much you know until they know how much you care."