Having a bad day?

2 Jul

O.K. even if you are having a bad day, it is not as bad as the writer of Psalm 88.  Everything is going wrong, everyone is against them and God is not helping.

1-9 God, you’re my last chance of the day.     I spend the night on my knees before you.  Put me on your salvation agenda;  take notes on the trouble I’m in. I’ve had my fill of trouble;  I’m camped on the edge of hell.  I’m written off as a lost cause, one more statistic, a hopeless case. Abandoned as already dead, one more body in a stack of corpses, And not so much as a gravestone— I’m a black hole in oblivion. You’ve dropped me into a bottomless pit, sunk me in a pitch-black abyss. I’m battered senseless by your rage, relentlessly pounded by your waves of anger. You turned my friends against me, made me horrible to them. I’m caught in a maze and can’t find my way out, blinded by tears of pain and frustration.

The passion of these first verses describe utter despair.  The psalmist is “camped on the edge of hell.  Have you ever felt this way?  I remember one night in my twenties, after a number of really stupid choices that twenty something folks tend to make,  I laid in a bed and truly hoped it was my last night on earth.

9-12 I call to you, God; all day I call.     I wring my hands, I plead for help. Are the dead a live audience for your miracles?     Do ghosts ever join the choirs that praise you? Does your love make any difference in a graveyard?     Is your faithful presence noticed in the corridors of hell? Are your marvelous wonders ever seen in the dark,     your righteous ways noticed in the Land of No Memory?

So, the question is. . . is God present in those horrible moments in our lives.  Well, since I believe the Divine Presence is always with us, my answer would have to be yes.  But, I think in my worse times it is very difficult to feel/experience that Presence.   For me that is the importance of faith over feeling.  That is, believing by faith that God’s love and grace is in the darkest pit and can enable us to step into a better reality.  Of course, I did not have this maturity of faith in my twenties.  But is was probably living through that experience that help to grow my faith.

13-18 I’m standing my ground, God, shouting for help,  at my prayers every morning, on my knees each daybreak. Why, God, do you turn a deaf ear?     Why do you make yourself scarce? For as long as I remember I’ve been hurting;     I’ve taken the worst you can hand out, and I’ve had it. Your wildfire anger has blazed through my life;     I’m bleeding, black-and-blue. You’ve attacked me fiercely from every side,     raining down blows till I’m nearly dead. You made lover and neighbor alike dump me; the only friend I have left is Darkness.
So, with your faith, stand your ground, even if your only friend is Darkness.  And, while you are standing your ground reach out to a friend in faith. . . give me a call.

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