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 where there is no water.
So I have looked upon you in the sanctuary,
beholding your power and glory.
Because your steadfast love is better than life,
my lips will praise you.
So I will bless you as long as I live;
I will lift up my hands and call on your name.
My soul is satisfied as with a rich feast,
and my mouth praises you with joyful lips
when I think of you on my bed,
and meditate on you in the watches of the night;
for you have been my help,
and in the shadow of your wings I sing for joy.
My soul clings to you;
your right hand upholds me.
These days one can buy a package holiday to the “Judean Wilderness”, we are invited to “share the experience” of David in a place where he sought refuge from his enemies. For those less adventurous among us, we can share his experience through his writings. A song to the Lord, written by a soul in the wilderness, a man running away – who we might expect to be asking God “why me?” – but he wasn’t. David expresses his longing for the Lord, his love for God, and how he feels protected by God’s love, even in a place where he doesn’t feel physically very safe.
Can we claim the same faithfulness? We may claim to be a church in the wilderness, we may feel we are being chased away, we may feel unwelcome, we may be afraid of the dark. There is comfort in this psalm – wherever we are, as individuals or churches, we may be absolutely certain that God is with us, and we can still sing His praises under the shadow of His wings, knowing that we are loved.
A personal prayer for courage:
Lord, when I feel weak
When my fears overwhelm me
Let me not forget that you are always with me.
Give me courage in the darkness,
Strengthen me with your love and grace,
Hold my hand to face tomorrow,
Ann Honey is a Church Related Community Worker in the Northern Synod
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