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Read Psalm 77

The Lenten season presents us with the opportunity for change, a change of heart, a change of understanding. This is clearly expressed in Psalm 77, that shifts from feelings of abandonment to realizing trust in a great and holy God.  How many times have we ourselves had instances of lament, the cathartic unleashing of feelings of despair? These can be soul-cleansing moments, when we express the raw emotions of feeling abandoned by God. The Message offers verse 9 this way: “Just my luck, the High God goes out of business just the moment I need him.”  Rather than drown in despair, the Psalmist recounts the greatness and holiness of God – that God is merciful and gracious, rescuing his people from Egyptian bondage.  He truly loves his people.  He truly loves us.  He is frighteningly powerful, that even creation trembles, but his people he holds safely in his hands, shepherding his sheep with care.

While we may despair in our sinfulness or overwhelmed with the circumstances of our situation, we can trust in a God who, although holy and powerful, is gracious and merciful.  In moments when we feel abandoned, may we continue to seek through those feelings to find that God cares for us.

God, be not far from us in our times of trouble, that we may find your mercy and grace to give us strength in our time of need.

Andrew Wade, First Christian Church, Logan, WV