In the Office: The Waiting

Recent days have been challenging for my church family. There have been a number of deaths —  some of close relatives, and others of close friends. We have several members recovering from significant surgery — and a number of others getting ready to undergoing challenging rounds of treatment. Of course, none of this makes us unique. Look deeply enough into almost any group of people and you’ll find grief and anxiety and challenges of various kinds. And if we’re honest, that can be hard to take. One of today’s psalms (Psalm 13) gives voice, I think, to a sentiment that can be all-too-familiar:

Lord, how long will you forget me? Forever?
    How long will you look the other way?
How long must I struggle with anguish in my soul,
    with sorrow in my heart every day? (Psalm 13:1-2)

But one of the gifts of being a part of a church family is that, even in our struggles, we know that we’ve got brothers and sisters who are praying for us. And even more, we know that we can rely on the faithfulness of God, who is able to lead us even through the valley of the shadow without fear. As today’s psalm goes on to put it:

But I trust in your unfailing love.
    I will rejoice because you have rescued me.
I will sing to the Lord
    because he is good to me. (Psalm 13:5-6)

So, to those who find themselves stuck in “The Waiting” today — both those who are known to me and those who aren’t — please know that you’re in my prayers. And know, too, that our Lord is faithful. And He is more than able (as a Celtic evening prayer puts it):

“to make His peace go with you wherever He may send you;
to guide you through the wilderness and protect you from the storm;
and to bring you home rejoicing at the wonders He has shown you.”

May we sing to the Lord today because of His unending goodness to us.

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