Archive for March 19th, 2022

Psalm 59: Complaint

Psalm 59: Complaintcomplaint

Saturday, March 19, 2022

The image of bloodthirsty foes is a frightening one; yet one to which we can relate. Here the psalmist petitions God to slay the evildoers; the New Testament Christ – God’s presence among us – requires that we pray for these enemy foes rather than ask for their annihilation. We are to pray for those who harm us, for we are the victims of their misdeeds. Our petitions will be heard by God.

Jesus reminds his followers: Who among us cannot pray for our friends? This is easily done. It is for our enemies that we must petition renewal and rescue. These are the people who truly need our prayers. Sometimes we feel too vulnerable to allow ourselves to be left open to the cruelty and violence of our enemies – – – this is often my own complaint – – – but God will always present us with the tools for any part of our journey. We may be unaware that we possess these tools because we have limited strength in comparison to God’s awesome and infinite strength; nevertheless, we must look for the small gifts of fortitude that come our way daily. These are the little responses we receive from God each day. In Revelation 3:7 we hear the voice of God: You have limited strength, and yet you have kept my word and have not denied my name. This is the kind of fidelity that God seeks, our constant, imperfect, human response to his call. We are made by God, God knows our weaknesses. God knows our strengths and God is waiting to convert our complaints into Easter joy.

The Apostle Peter tells us in his first letter 5:5b-14 that the devil prowls around us to surprise us at any opportunity. We are to resist him, be steadfast in faith, and know that our brothers and sisters throughout the world undergo the same sufferings.

And so we lift our Lenten prayer: When bloodthirsty enemies approach: Remind us of your strength, O Lord.

When we find ourselves ambushed by life, remind us that the powerful are nothing when compared to you:  Remind us of your strength, O Lord.

When we find ourselves overtaken by the growling dogs, remind us that you dwell within us:  Remind us of your strength, O Lord.

When sharp words wound us, and mouths pour out insults, remind us that you want to laugh with us: Remind us of your strength, O Lord.

When lies told under oath bring us sorrow, remind us that these sinful words will destroy liars in their own untruths: Remind us of your strength, O Lord.

May God go before us and show us our fallen foes: Remind us of your strength, O Lord.

We shall sing of your strength, your praise we will sing: Remind us of your strength, O Lord.

You are our strength, our fortress, our loving God: Remind us of your strength, O Lord.

You will answer our complaint when we call: Remind us of your strength, O Lord.


Adapted from a post written on April 26, 2009.

Image from: http://imgkid.com/complaint-handling.shtml

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