Devotion and Prayer for Week of October 7, 2012

Meditation for the Week of October 7, 2012

 

“My soul finds rest in God alone; my salvation comes from him.”  Psalm 62:1

Have you ever noticed that with so many of the Psalms, the author vacillates between despair and hope?  One moment he praises God for all his goodness and the next he finds his life filled with hopelessness.  One moment he speaks of God’s everlasting love and the next he cries in anguish that God seems nowhere to be found.

Why is that?  Why this schizophrenic view of life and God?  Well, for me, it is simply reflective of what it means to be a person of faith.  The psalms, if they are anything, are honest.  They paint a realistic view of life and that is why I appreciate them so much.  The psalms do not try to mask or hide the reality that is the struggle that comes with faith; a struggle (if we are honest) we all share.

While it would be nice to always feel completely and totally in tune with God and, without experiencing any doubts, to know that he can always be trusted, that just doesn’t happen.  Even the most faithful among us struggle from time to time when life gets hard.  We see that with our fellow Christians, we see it with the heroes of the faith in the Bible and we see it reflected in the psalms as doubts are expressed and frustrations aired.  When life is hard, it is hard to see God.

However, what we also find in the psalms is that the author does not remain in despair and he does the most peculiar thing:  when the psalmist can’t see God…he goes to God.  The psalmist always goes back to source where peace and comfort is found.  “My soul finds rest in God alone; my salvation comes from him.”  The message of the psalms is that yes, life can be pretty difficult at time and that yes, often God seems not to be there.  However, what the psalms proclaim is that God is always there even when we don’t think he is.  God is always faithful when he says he will never leave us or forsake and so he is the one to whom we always turn when we find ourselves struggling.

In the midst of our struggles God encourages us to seek rest in him and him alone.  In truth, there is no other place to find rest because, our “salvation comes from him.”  He is the one who, through the death and resurrection of Jesus, has guaranteed us deliverance from this world of struggles.  He is the one who sacrificed all that we might live in the hope of eternal peace with him.  There really is no other place to look.

So, the next time life throws you a curve and God seems nowhere to be found…run to him!  He is there for you where he said he would be, that is, he is in his Word and he is waiting to give you rest.  You can find him throughout your Bible and if you are looking for a place to start, try the psalms.  I am sure you will find him there.

 

Our Weekly Prayer

Heavenly Father, too often the difficulties of this life lead us to despair and the fear that you are far from us.  When we feel that way, pull us to your Word where we can be strengthened in the knowledge that because of Jesus, you have promised never to leave us or abandon us.  Comfort us in difficult times so that we might find our rest and peace in your love.  In Jesus’ name.  Amen.