Saturday, February 6, 2010

The Deep Waters

"Save me, O God; for the waters are come in unto my soul. I sink in deep mire, where there is no standing: I am come into deep waters, where the floods overflow me." - Psalm 69: 1-2

This is what most of us feel at different points in a given week without being able to articulate just what "it" is. Sometimes it's sudden, hitting you like a strong current. Other times it's gradual. You wake up and just feel down. The kind of expression David is talking about here can be either sharp or throbbing.

Where are the waters coming in to your life? Where do you feel the current swirling around you, with no dry ground nearby or life-raft in sight? I think sometimes we do a good job articulating our daily fears and concerns to others and experience the relief of having someone else share a burden with us, but if we're honest, I think most of us do an even better job hiding these fears deep in the recesses of our minds and hearts.

We as a generation are not very good at listening. I am a pretty bad listener. I don't exactly know why we're just not very good listeners anymore, but maybe it has to do with all the distractions, both internal and external, that crash around in our minds like hyperactive bumper-cars. Listening requires presence. It requires attention. Both of which are hard to do when you have a cell phone in your pocket and a list of things to do begging you to attend to them.

We're just pretty distracted, when it comes down to it. And these distractions are tools the enemy uses to keep us busy when we know we need to slow down. These distractions in our lives are like sunglasses that dull the magnificence of the hope found in the promises of God. When we are distracted, we don't pay attention to the foundational promises of our faith. Like the promise that God will never leave us or forsake us. Or the promise that God's wisdom is better than our wisdom. Or even the life-altering promise that God has a plan and purpose for our lives.

We need to learn to meditate on these promises and there find deep wells of encouragement. These promises are the lifeblood of our hope as Christians. They are what enable us to face the coming waters and stand steadfast. I love how David ends this Psalm:

"For the LORD heareth the poor, and despiseth not his prisoners...For God will save Zion"

He is standing in the turmoil of the present but rejoicing in the hope of the promise of God. This is our way forward. Not glibbly shutting our eyes to the struggles around us, but standing in the midst of them and proclaiming the truths of God's eternal promises to us. There we find encouragement and strength strangely not of ourselves. There we find the Risen Savior. And He is all we need.

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