15 May Pastor’s Paragraph for May 17, 2020
Pastor's Paragraph for May 17, 2020
MAY 17, 2020
In a recent webinar, a presenter proposed three questions to be asking ourselves as we seek to navigate these challenging times, to be in tune with what we’re feeling and experiencing, and to help us keep perspective. 1)What has COVID-19 taken away? (our lament); 2)What has COVID-19 not taken away? (our awareness that not everything has changed); 3)What positive thing has COVID-19 given me today? (our gratitude). A vital part of this exercise is to offer it all to God in prayer. Through this season, it’s especially important to guard our time in scripture and prayer, embracing Sabbath time with God. Turn off the television, sit in silence, take a walk, or look out the window at God’s good earth, breathe in the fresh air.
The Psalms express and embrace the gamut of our human response to God and God’s world, from exuberant praise to despair to intense anger to doubt about God’s care to hope for a future based precisely on God’s care. Capturing our up-and-down relationship with God, they help us express emotions we might not otherwise have words for or may not feel right about. Psalm 63 is one I have thought a lot about during COVID-19: “O God, you are my God, I seek you, my soul thirsts for you; my flesh faints for you, as in a dry and weary land… I have looked upon you in the sanctuary, beholding your power and glory. Because your love is better than life, my lips will glorify you. …On my bed I remember you in the watches of the night. Because you are my help, I sing in the shadow of your wings. My soul clings to you; your right hand upholds me.”
“Psalm” is derived from the Greek word translators used for the Hebrew word mizmor, meaning “song.” During this COVID-19 season, my husband and I really miss singing in the choir! One of our favorite hymns that seems especially appropriate right now is “You Are Mine.” It reminds us that no matter where we are or how we may feel, God is always there, calling to us and inviting us to follow. “I will come to you in the silence, I will lift you from all your fear… be still and know I am here…I am hope for all who are hopeless, I am eyes for all who long to see. In the shadows of the night, I will be your light, come and rest in me…. I am strength for all the despairing….I am peace the world cannot give. I will call your name, embracing all your pain… Do not be afraid, I am with you. I have called you each by name. Come and follow me… I love you and you are mine.”
May you be especially blessed this day by God’s presence!