Sticking my fingers in my ears and making noises to drown out unpleasant, scary and confusing news is so tempting. I can’t decide if that is more stupid than the news of current events that keeps cascading into my life. Why have I been consumed with finding out what is going on, when innuendos, gossip, and speculation compete with facts?
A pox on everybody’s house. . . except mine and thine . . . I declare when I’m tempted to plug my ears, shut my eyes, and outshout what is bursting my bubble.
But what good is cursing what I can’t control – or shutting my eyes to what I can?
If spring has been said to go out like a lion, this summer departed like a T-Rex!
- An actual hurricane – Florence— has slashed across the Carolinas.
- A political hurricane is wreaking havoc – again.
- Illnesses have stormed through the lives of people we know and love.
I finally understand why some people thought abbeys and convents were necessary. Life gets in the way of prayers, even as it creates new demands for them.
What do I do?
Pray as if everything depends on God; work [GIVE] as though everything depends on me.
Let God’s promises shine on your problems. ~Corrie ten Boom
Memo to Self –
You won’t find those promises on social media or with your fingers stuck in your ears, either.
Because I can’t keep track of all that’s going wrong; because I don’t know what to pray, I am glad for the Psalms, and gladder still for the Gospels. (John 16:33) They become more potent when I read them and don’t just talk about reading them.
Billy Graham said every day he read five Psalms. Because of the most recent events, I understand better why he did. Reading through these ancient words with 21stcentury current events in mind restores perspective and balance when storms sweep in. There is nothing new under the sun, even if it is news to me.
Normally, I just land on a few favorite Psalms I know and understand. However, I have widened my landing pad.
Fortunately, understanding the Psalms so that they might become spiritual aids has been the goal of the church’s recent sermon series. (Full disclosure: the pastor is our son-in-law. J)
Serendipitously, our Bible study has been camping in “lament” Psalms as we read the Bible through together. By the way, reading through the Bible enriches formerly inscrutable verses.
Reading Psalms – committing what I can to my rusty memory – is an organizing principle that stabilizes me when my heart and mind are going in different directions with too much news. They show me all the vials in which God keeps my tears, and records my joys.
8 You keep track of all my sorrows.
You have collected all my tears in your bottle.
You have recorded each one in your book.
9 My enemies will retreat when I call to you for help.
This I know: God is on my side! Psalm 56:8-9 (NLT)
Lord, God, I believe; help thou my unbelief.