Friday, August 23, 2013

Out of Context

Did you ever feel like your whole life was "out of context" with the rest of the world? Don't take me wrong - I'm okay with where I am (right now) - but sometimes I watch everyone else is this highly socialized world talk about going to do this and going to do this while I feel I am captive in my own house. The absence of a real social life can be very draining; but we cope; in our own out of context ways!

I thought about being out of context as I was reading Psalm 22 today. We almost always hear verse 3 separated out from the previous verses. Pastors and song leaders use verse three to try and get us to "worship" and invite God's presence in -- but isn't He already here? They tell us He is "enthroned on praise" and that is true - but it's the praise our broken lives gives birth to if you look a the first two verses. Actually, we only hear verse one on Easter - My God, My God why have you forsaken me?  But when have we ever put these scriptures together? The first two verses are the psalmist crying out and feeling separated from his God. the next couple it seems he's trying to remind himself who and where God is. Have you ever felt separated from God? We know we are not -- but it can certainly feel like it sometimes.

The rest of Psalm 22 is like the first few verses. David cries out from his fear, abandonment, trouble, and helplessness. And then he will remind himself once again of God's faithfulness, strength and presence. Sound familiar? -- it sure does to me!! (It's okay - I'm used to being alone! lol)

In the culture of the church we've not been allowed to express our feelings of hopelessness, despair, helplessness or fear. But I think this psalm is a good reminder that it is quite alright to be honest about our feelings; and then try to find God in them - rather than separate from them. How will I know I need His peace if I do not admit mine is gone? How do I run to Him as a fortress if I never acknowledge there is a battle?

It's okay to see our own wretched state -- and bring it to Him with a clean, open, and honest heart. Today I will remind myself that He is close to me in the lowly situation -- He is my fortress because there is  a battle - and He is my strength because I am weak....

If you come looking for me - I'll be running to Him. Care to join me?

4 comments:

  1. Thank you for sharing what the Lord has so richly shared with you. I'm presently a caregiver for my elderly mom (age 90) who as yet does not know Jesus as her Lord and Savior. She is miserable most of the time. As difficult as it is to take care of her because of her attitude, the Lord leads me to His Word and sites such as you have here. Greatly encouraged by your faith. Will keep you and your family in prayer. We are never alone. Lord bless you richly....

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  2. Ursula,I am so glad that you are able to be there for your mom and are able to share God's tangible love with her. Thank you so much for praying for our family - I will reciprocate and pray for yours as well. Thank you so much for sharing with us today. I pray God richly blesses you and your family. Thanks for reading.

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  3. Hey Jeanie! I am always blessed when I stop by to read your blog. God is using you and Chris in great ways. Thank you for your honesty and openness. I too long for the body of believers to stop gilding themselves with perfection, and start being honest with the struggles. How can the body see to itself when it does not know where it is hurting? With masks off, and scares shown, this can happen. If God has brought one through a struggle, and then another is open about theirs, and it's the same, then God can work the struggle of the one for good in the other. Its a beautiful design for showing God's grace and glory. We just need to peal back some layers.

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  4. Shawn, thank you so much for sharing your input. I really like the point you made about not knowing what areas need attention if the body is unaware of where it is hurting. Ignoring pain or dysfunction keeps us in the same old religious cycle and stands in the way of the healing process. Hopefully as we broaden our perspective and see that every person's life is not just "hunky-dory" we can begin to bring healing to the hurting. It may take stepping out of our comfort zones though! Thanks again for sharing, and thanks so much for reading.

    Jeanie

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