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Lenten Devotions from Fourth Presbyterian Church

Saturday, August 8, 2020  

Today’s Scripture Reading  |  Psalm 124

If it had not been the Lord who was on our side
   —let Israel now say—
if it had not been the Lord who was on our side,
   when our enemies attacked us,
then they would have swallowed us up alive,
   when their anger was kindled against us;
then the flood would have swept us away,
   the torrent would have gone over us;
then over us would have gone
   the raging waters.

Blessed be the Lord,
   who has not given us
   as prey to their teeth.
We have escaped like a bird
   from the snare of the fowlers;
the snare is broken,
   and we have escaped.

Our help is in the name of the Lord,
   who made heaven and earth. (NRSV)

We all go through seasons in our lives when everything seems to be against us. We may feel attacked by friends, family, or coworkers. It may seem like we are being swallowed alive by work projects and Zoom calls while trying to take care of a family. We could experience natural disasters and literally be swept up in raging floodwaters. While growing up in St. Louis, Missouri, I remember seeing the rising waters and damage caused by the flood of 1993. One of my most vivid memories of that time was watching a major levee break on live TV. It was not far from our house, and we were thankfully spared due to our home being on a bluff, but we had neighbors who were not nearly as lucky. We spent the next days helping folks move furniture and possessions by boat from the floodwaters to dry land. The damage was absolutely devastating to our community.

Some of us may be in a miserable season, where all odds seem to be against us. None of us are immune to these seasons, and given the last several months of dealing with a pandemic, many of us might be feeling overwhelmed. We know people experiencing unemployment. We see local restaurants and businesses closing, and we see people falling ill. What else is going to be thrown at us? Can we handle anything more?

In the midst of this, we can rest in the fact that God is with us. God brings us hope and surrounds us with love. God is walking with us through these difficult times and will always be by our side.

Loving God, I thank you for your presence in my life during these uncertain and difficult times. As the world seems to be turning upside down, help me to remember that you are walking beside me, surrounding me with your love. Amen.

Written by Briana Belding-Peck, Family Ministry Coordinator

Reflection and prayer © Fourth Presbyterian Church

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