Running with Mark 90

 

Day 90 – March 27, 2020

 

Read:

Psalm 22:1-2, 14-21 New Revised Standard Version

My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?

Psalm 22:1

 

Do not be far from me, for trouble is near, and there is no one to help.

Psalm 22:11

 

I am poured out like water, and all my bones are out of joint.

My strength is dried up like a potsherd and my tongue sticks to the roof of my mouth.

Psalm 22:14, 15

 

These words, written by David, are true words of agony.  This psalm is called a “Psalm of Lament”. Lament psalms can be individual or communal.   Lament psalms take on a very specific form:

Verses 1-2 = statement of the problem (I)

Verses 3-5 = expression of confidence (I)

Verses 6-8 = statement of the problem (II)

Verses 9-11 = expression of confidence (II)

Verses 12-18 = statement of the problem (III)

Verses 19-21 = entreaty for relief (I)

Verses 22-31 = the certainty of being heard and the vow.

 

I encourage you to go through the entire psalm, and see this pattern at work.

 

The psalmist feels free to cry out to God with all of his hurt, his fears, his agony.  For Jesus, the psalms were a primary means of prayer.  He learned them when he was just a boy, and continued to draw on them in his ministry.  Jesus will pray part of this Psalm while he is hanging on the cross.  “My God, why have you forsaken me?”.  After praying this psalm, Jesus will offer more gut-wrenching prayers from the cross, until at last he says, “Into thy hands I commit my spirit”.  As the psalmist in Psalm 22 states his faith and hope in God, so too does Jesus.

 

As I prepare this devotional it is Sunday, March 22, 2020.  As of today there are 32,644 cases of COVID19 that have been tested positive.  There are of course many more people who are ill than have been tested due to the shortage of tests. Senator Rand Paul revealed that he has tested positive, and now several other senators are quarantined.  What will these counts be by the time you read this on March 27th

 

If ever there were a time to pray in the words of Psalm 22, this is the time.

So beloved, cry out to God with your whole heart.  Pour out your fears.

 

 

Music:

Nearer My God to Thee – BYU Vocal Point

Yo Yo Ma on encouraging “Songs of Comfort” amid global crisis.  PBS

 

Prayer Focus:

Christ himself understands our feeling forsaken.

 

Grace and peace,
Pastor Karen Bruins


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