Scripture Reading: Psalm 130
Out of the depths I cry to you, O Lord.
Lord, hear my voice!
Let your ears be attentive
to the voice of my supplications!
I wait for the Lord, my soul waits,
and in his word I hope;
my soul waits for the Lord
more than those who watch for the morning,
more than those who watch for the morning. Psalm 130:1-2, 5-6
I inadvertently did something recently that caused some hardship to a woman for whom I hold the highest regard. Part of the reason I respect her so much is she does not sweat the small stuff. When I apologized to her she was more than gracious, a good role model to be sure. She has learned the art of waiting for the Lord. She has been a justice advocate for years with a primary interest in the environment. I wonder if her years of working the soil led to her steely forbearance.
We waste a lot of time and energy being vexed by the small stuff, in the church and in government. Such diversions serve the purpose of draining us from attaining our real purpose. Some may be out of our control, like storms that knock out utilities. Others, I fear, are intentional. The religious leaders of the first century were constantly accosting Jesus about issues such as what constitutes working on the Sabbath to distract him from his peace through justice teachings. He insists we love people we do not want to love and share power when we would rather be in control.
Lifting our concerns to God, particularly the petty ones, before we throw them in another’s face is the beginning of patience. Crying out of our depths to God, those things that are vexing us might give us light on how silly some of them really are and thus are best left with God. However, in those times when the world seems truly to be spinning out of control, God will reflect to us any actions we are called to take and be with us throughout any ordeal. I love the ending of John 16 when Jesus says, But take courage; I have conquered the world! It not only indicates his commitment to guiding the world, but each of us as individuals. He can and will make us each whole in a fragmented world.
Prayer: Lord, grant us each the courage to trust you to lead us in the way we should go and grant us the patience to wait for those instructions. Amen.
All scriptures are quoted from the new Revised Standard Version Bible: Anglicized Edition, copyright 1989, 1995, Division of Christian Education of the National Council of Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights are reserved.