Monday 2 August, 2021

Psalm 42

For the director of music. A maskil of the Sons of Korah. 1 As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, my God. 2 My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When can I go and meet with God? 3 My tears have been my food day and night, while people say to me all day long, “Where is your God?” 4 These things I remember as I pour out my soul: how I used to go to the house of God under the protection of the Mighty One with shouts of joy and praise among the festive throng. 5 Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Saviour and my God. 6 My soul is downcast within me; therefore I will remember you from the land of the Jordan, the heights of Hermon—from Mount Mizar. 7 Deep calls to deep in the roar of your waterfalls; all your waves and breakers have swept over me. 8 By day the Lord directs his love, at night his song is with me— a prayer to the God of my life. 9 I say to God my Rock, “Why have you forgotten me? Why must I go about mourning, oppressed by the enemy?” 10 My bones suffer mortal agony as my foes taunt me, saying to me all day long, “Where is your God?” 11 Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Saviour and my God.

When was the last time you were really thirsty? I mean really, really, desperately thirsty? How far would you go to get water in that state? I feel like I try to live my life very evenly, not too much drama, but the psalmist is recalling a time when his approach to God was passionate, dramatic, consuming, as if his life depends on it.

Have you ever felt like that towards God? If I am feeling disconnected, unmoved or dispassionate in my faith then the news is good. Twice in this psalm I am reminded that help is always close at hand. I don’t need to generate false enthusiasm or feelings. The key is praise – regardless of feelings. My circumstances cannot be allowed to change my view of Almighty God. The psalmist speaks of being downcast (discouraged/depressed), mourning (grief/loss), physical pain and a sense of abandonment. But God is still God. He is still our hope and will even be found when we feel like we are drowning. In the middle of a lockdown, in the middle of whatever personal challenges you and I are facing, our Loving Father is with us. We have reason to be hopeful.

Heavenly Father I thank you that you are who you say you are. Thank you that I can put my trust in you. Spark in me Lord a passion to seek you. Lord help me not to be distracted by my feelings. Reveal yourself to me today. In Jesus name I pray. Amen

Written by Christine Knight

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