I guess this is a legitimate prayer. Some days that is all there is energy for.
And David the psalmist seems to have been accustomed to this too. Here, from Psalm 31:22 (NLT):
In panic I cried out,
“I am cut off from the Lord!”
But you heard my cry for mercy
and answered my call for help.
A portion of this Psalm was part of the reading in my daily devotional time today.
A psalm of David.
1 I give you thanks, O Lord, with all my heart;
I will sing your praises before the gods.
2 I bow before your holy Temple as I worship.
I praise your name for your unfailing love and faithfulness;
for your promises are backed
by all the honor of your name.
3 As soon as I pray, you answer me;
you encourage me by giving me strength.
4 Every king in all the earth will thank you, Lord,
for all of them will hear your words.
5 Yes, they will sing about the Lord’s ways,
for the glory of the Lord is very great.
6 Though the Lord is great, he cares for the humble,
but he keeps his distance from the proud.
7 Though I am surrounded by troubles,
you will protect me from the anger of my enemies.
You reach out your hand,
and the power of your right hand saves me.
8 The Lord will work out his plans for my life—
for your faithful love, O Lord, endures forever.
Don’t abandon me, for you made me.
Parts of the Psalm stuck in my mind – "your promises are backed by all the honor of your name" And I call on this promise in these days as friends struggle through some really tough issues.
Then the last bit, "The Lord will work out his plans for my life—
for your faithful love, O Lord, endures forever." really seems right for me at this time. It is hard to be hoping for changes, not having them realized, waiting to see what is the next step for me.
A quote from the book by Edith M. Humphrey, Ecstasy and Intimacy: Where the Holy Spirit Meets the Human Spirit, p. 89
In Luke 9:28-36, we watch another rabbi taking his inner group of disciples to a holy place to pray. They call him “Master” but through this event he will be revealed as greater than any mystical rabbi, indeed, greater than both the law-giver and the prophets….Their master enters into significant communion with Moses and Elijah, both of whom had, in their lifetimes, powerful revelations of God’s power, and poignant moments of intimacy. Moses, we remember, spoke with God “mouth to mouth”; Elijah was visited by God’s still, small voice in a time of despair. These two great servants of God talk with Jesus about his death to come, in terms that clearly recall God’s delivering power in past times – Jesus is being strengthened in order to accomplish his “departure” (literally his “Exodus”, 9:31) his redemption of the people, in Jerusalem. The disciples, though they do not understand all this, are themselves embraced by the glory of the scene. Though they are afraid, the cloud of glory, the numinous presence of God, envelopes them, too, and they are left with the sound of the Father’s voice ringing in their ears: “This is my beloved Son, my chosen, listen to him!”
From Isaiah 43: 1b to 3a The Message – part of my reading for the morning. Next to the Psalms, Isaiah ranks highest for me in speaking to needs deep within me – for comfort, for my need to feel cared for by a God who never comes to dead ends like I do.
Don’t be afraid, I’ve redeemed you.
I’ve called your name. You’re mine.
When you’re in over your head, I’ll be there with you.
When you’re in rough waters, you will not go down.
When you’re between a rock and a hard place,
it won’t be a dead end—
Because I am God, your personal God,
The Holy of Israel, your Savior.
Just a verse that has been going through my mind a lot lately:
John 8: 31 and 32
31 Jesus said to the people who believed in him, “You are truly my disciples if you remain faithful to my teachings. 32 And you will know the truth, and the truth will set you free.”
I think it is telling me not to be afraid of investigating truth because God is found there. The kind of truth that is illuminated by God’s wisdom is freeing, not something to fear.
So, I must spend time really listening to God as I study.
You know I think I’ve been in this place before. God was there and I learned to trust him/her to b e a bit bigger than an old image of him was. There was freedom from fear there as well.
I guess I should trust that my questions won’t scare God away.
We began quite the discussion tonight deciding to delve into the book God of the Possible by Gregory Boyd. The Open view of God as opposed to the Classical view is explored in his book. We decided to read it since last week we were grappling with some of the issues it discusses – issue that keep coming up in conversations about God.
I’m not sure we knew what we were getting into.
I looked up some stuff on the internet to see what was being said about this and came up with this and this. Lots of interesting discussion.
I think we will certainly stretch our minds a bit as we discuss this. We are no theologians but we need to be aware of this and weigh the evidence for both sides as best we can. I personally find that the open view makes sense to me but I also know that God’s ways are not always going to be understood by me. I can accept that. I also know that it is not necessary for me to choose between the viewpoints but to learn from both.
Another quote from Henri Nouwen that is just too good not to repeat.
The Still, Small Voice of Love
Many voices ask for our attention. There is a voice that says, “Prove that you are a good person.” Another voice says, “You’d better be ashamed of yourself.” There also is a voice that says, “Nobody really cares about you,” and one that says, “Be sure to become successful, popular, and powerful.” But underneath all these often very noisy voices is a still, small voice that says, “You are my Beloved, my favor rests on you.” That’s the voice we need most of all to hear. To hear that voice, however, requires special effort; it requires solitude, silence, and a strong determination to listen.
That’s what prayer is. It is listening to the voice that calls us “my Beloved.”