Lent Devotion for April 11, 2019

Psalm 118:1–4 (NRSV)


1 O give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;his steadfast love endures forever!2 Let Israel say,“His steadfast love endures forever.”3 Let the house of Aaron say,“His steadfast love endures forever.”4 Let those who fear the Lord say,“His steadfast love endures forever.”

This psalm starts with a call and response. 


Give thanks…his steadfast love endures forever. Let Aaron say…his steadfast love endures forever. Let Israel say…his steadfast love endures forever. Let all say…his steadfast love endures forever.

Repetition is a tool that Bible authors used to convey their points memorably.  This psalm quickly drills down to the key point that God is the steadfast one and for that we can all give praise.

In the United Methodist tradition, we call this prevenient grace. The grace, or gift, that comes before. Before we acknowledge. Before we recognize. Before we believe.

God is not waiting around for you, or me, to figure things out. God does not linger until we get good enough. God refuses to hesitate while we become grateful.

Rather, God is the prolific first mover.

So, take a deep breath this morning. God’s steadfast love endures forever. 

Release the worry and anxiety that you are holding onto. God’s steadfast love endures forever.

Step out and take a risk. God’s steadfast love endures forever.

Father, Son and Holy Spirit, thank you that you always make the first move toward us. Give us eyes to see, ears to hear, and hearts that are willing to follow you.

Published by Todd Nelson

I'm one of the pastors at First United Methodist Church in Lexington, Kentucky where I've served for the past thirteen years. The sub-title of this blog is "Grace is no accident" which happens to be the defining reality of my life. God's grace (gift) is the reason we have breath in our lungs and hope in our hearts.

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