Scripture: Psalm 146
Key verse: (3) Do not put your trust in princes,
in mortals, in whom there is no help.
Reflection: Do you every find yourself so caught up in the world that you can’t think about other things? I frequently find myself in this position. Early in the quarantine days, I noticed myself spending increased time on my phone, reading the news a lot, and feeling overly burdened by the weight of the world. 2020 has been a year for the books – full of uncertainty, unrest, and deep grief – I needed a way to get out of my head and connect with something greater. I started taking long, intentional walks. This was a practice I had enjoyed in other periods of my life but let slip away during my time in seminary. So every afternoon or evening I got out to walk around my neighborhood. This spiritual discipline not only gave me some daily exercise and time away from screens but I found myself remembering the One who carries our burdens for us. I felt my physical body praying in ways I never imagined and I began to release some of my worries about the world that were too heavy for me to bear alone.
We live in a world that continually calls our attention to earthly and physical matters. Materialism prevails; we find ourselves putting our resources into possessions, ideals and leaders. We become overly consumed by negative media and are disappointed when worldly things let us down. Even so, we are reminded that our faith calls us to be in the world and not of it. Jesus teaches us throughout the Gospels that we are called to serve the Lord and others and to keep our faith in him not earthly leaders, as our focus verse for today reminds us as well.
Today’s psalm refocuses our attention from the world around us to God’s faithful actions in the world. We are called to remember the great works of God when we begin to focus too much on ourselves. As Christians we are searching for the balance of serving God by actively participating in the world around us, loving and serving our neighbors, and also keeping our faithful relationship with the Lord. Walks help me to center myself around this type of faithful balance. I wonder what helps keep you balanced in your faith and how these practices might draw us closer to each other and to God.
Prayer: Ever-present God, we often come to you bearing the burdens of this world. Remind us that we do not bear any burden alone and renew us so that we continue to trust and praise you. In your holy name. Amen.
Author: Savannah Demuynck
[Scripture quotations are from New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved].