Lenten Devotion for March 22, 2019

Psalm 63:1–8 (NRSV)

1 O God, you are my God, I seek you,my soul thirsts for you;my flesh faints for you,as in a dry and weary land where there is no water.2 So I have looked upon you in the sanctuary,beholding your power and glory.3 Because your steadfast love is better than life,my lips will praise you.4 So I will bless you as long as I live;I will lift up my hands and call on your name.5 My soul is satisfied as with a rich feast,and my mouth praises you with joyful lips6 when I think of you on my bed,and meditate on you in the watches of the night;7 for you have been my help,and in the shadow of your wings I sing for joy.8 My soul clings to you;your right hand upholds me.

Lent 2019 for me has been a mix of things for me. Between General Conference, a trip to work on my dissertation, Board of Ordained Ministry interviews, and most recently the announcement of the new appointment of our Andover Campus pastor Jim Nichols, I have yet to find any rhythm. I don’t mention this to be a humble brag about how busy I am, but rather to share something that I bet many of you feel at times too…out of rhythm and even overwhelmed.

So, what do we do? Well, we can give up or give in for starters. Neither are those are good options however. Giving up on plans because we are busy or giving in to a level of distraction are both sure fire ways of taking steps backward in our faith journey.  

Instead, I find it best to focus on what I can do instead of all the things I can’t. I also remind myself that these seasons don’t last forever (if it does, it’s not a season but a lifestyle!) and that calmer waters are ahead where I will find my rhythm again. And finally, I remind myself that God is in control and has actually been preparing me for these times. So, I lean in and give myself in the work and the relationships and the needs of the day. For such a time as this is my prayer. And there is something quite peaceful about knowing just that.

Lord God, you who hovered over the deep and brought order from chaos, please remind me of your control over creation which includes my life. You, who gives to each time, place and situation exactly what is needed do so in my life today.