MAR 10In Trouble? Seek the Lord

In the day of my trouble I sought the Lord. . . (Ps. 77:2a)

As a personal reflection, I conclude that this is a psalm for Christianity today. Every Christian should try to understand its poetic language. Psalm 77 is a psalm of lament with words of distress, almost to the point of disaster. Moreover, it gives us as believers permission to lament, a concept often taught as inappropriate and something that should never be done.

Almost every statement pertaining to Christianity today is anti-lament. That is, if you are stressed, you are not a Christian. If you make any statement of complaint, it is a display of the lack of faith. Yet, Psalm 77 is written and sung by a group of people commissioned by David to be court musicians to sing the praises from the liturgy in the sanctuary of the living God. Seeking God when the sun is peeking over the horizon is not a real difficulty.

Coming into the presence of God when the seasons of life smell with the fragrance of spring is not a chore. When life bounces youthfully on young legs, everything is full of excitement. When there are no aging wrinkles, the steps are vigorous. When nothing but the future can be seen, there is nothing but words of celebration.

But the farther we walk, the more we know that those strong legs give way and those eyes narrow to a slit. No longer is the future seen, but it is the past that is remembered. The good news is that you can seek God, not only in the good times, but also in the bad times. You can turn all of your attention to God and rest completely on His dependability. Yet I am thankful that it's all right to have ups and downs in our lives.

Lord God, after a long time on the mountaintop, we're trudging through the valley. Nothing seems to be going right, but we're afraid to tell our Christian brothers and sisters because they'll just tell us we're going through this rough time because we don't have enough faith. Thank You, Lord, for letting us pour out our hearts to You. We know that You'll help us get through this. Amen.