Day 1 of 5 • This day’s reading
Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever.
When anxiety hits, it’s easy to forget – forget how incredible the God of all things really is. Our eyes get drawn to the immediate stress: that thing in the past which didn’t go well, that task in the present which is threatening to overwhelm or that event in the future that is filling us with fear.
It’s not surprising that we find it easy to focus on the hard. This world is fallen, broken and that means many aspects of it cause us huge pain. But the pain is not all there is. “God is not a remote, impersonal force but deeply involved in his world. He knows what’s hurting and what’s wrong; he cares about the way we have both received great pain and, at times, caused it in the lives of others; he gets that our relationships are not as they should be; he understands where our bodies are broken; and, most importantly, he has a plan to make things new.” (p38).
When the Psalmist wrote Psalm 118, he wasn’t enjoying an easy ride. He knows what it is to be hard pressed (v5), surrounded (v10) and about to fall (v13). His words resonate with the many pressures of the 21st century world. But he helps us to remember something important – that this world is God’s world and he is full of goodness and love. Love and goodness that never end.
Interestingly, he doesn’t just ask us to note God’s goodness and love with a quiet nod and an inward affirmation of something true, he asks his readers to speak it out. Let Israel say … Let the house of Aaron (the priests) say … Let those who fear the Lord say … There’s something wonderful about speaking out truths like that. Doing so encourages us and it encourages others too.
So, today, however you are feeling, why not take a moment to remember and to speak out the wonderful news that God is good and his love endures forever?
Father God, I am struggling right now. I feel weak and I feel scared. But I know that you are good and you are with me – please help me remember that even now I am immeasurably loved by you. Amen