Psalm 68 (Psalms on the Trail)

Psalm 68:1, May 2014

Let God arise, and let God’s enemies be scattered.  Psalm 68:1

Oh, this morning I was all worked up.  I felt like I had so much to do and not enough time to do it in. So what’s new, you ask.  But I asked: How can I be a worship leader and a congregational redeveloper and a sermon preparer and a pastoral care giver and an administrator and a choral singer and a cook (yes, I had promised to make a pot of chicken soup for the Lenten supper) all in one day?  And on top of that, I was supposed to take time to write a blog post about a psalm?  (I seemed to have forgotten about the wife and grandmother part.)  Come on, be honest; we each have days like this, right??

I am glad that this is the psalm verse that challenged me this morning when I could hardly sit still to pray as the sun was trying to rise.  But later, while the chicken carcass was making its broth, I actually reclaimed 20 minutes of stillness, quietness and gratefulness.  I lit a candle, shut the door and prayed.  You see, the “enemies” that needed to be scattered were my over-anxious, compulsive lists of things that I thought needed to be done within the hours of this one day.  What I truly needed, however, was God’s life-giving peace to arise, to grow, to move with me throughout the day.  I know in my head, but have a hard time living with the fact,  that it  is not the things  I accomplish but how I am living in the relationships with God and others that is important in life.   In my most spiritually coherent moments,  I understand that it is God’s life-giving love and care that I truly want to arise in me, not a bunch of checks on my to-do list.  The latter might as well be scattered for all the lasting good it does me or anyone else.

Suggestions:

1. Take this verse with you and ponder its meaning for you throughout the day.  What do you notice?  What do you wonder?  What do you pray for God to scatter in you today?  What do you pray to arise within you?

2. Or read all of Psalm 68 to discover how this verse fits into the psalm or to discover a different verse.

3. Or comment with a photo of your own that illustrates this verse’s meaning for you.

Tomorrow’s verse is from Psalm 69:5-6.

Starting January 1, 2016, for 150 days I am posting a daily psalm verse with a photo that is a visual meditation on the text for me.  Each day a verse from the next psalm is chosen until all 150 psalms have been featured.   To participate you may subscribe to my blog at http://elainedent.net or “friend” me on Facebook and watch for the daily links to blog posts.  Disclaimer:  I am not a photographer and most of the photos are from a cell phone or small camera while hiking the Appalachian Trail or the C&O Canal/Great Allegheny Passage Trail.

Comments

  1. So very true. The hardest part, when the things on our checklist are all such truly good things, is to recognize when our heart begins to look toward accomplishing these things for our meaning, fulfillment, or even justification rather than God’s life-giving peace. More often than not, we make idols out of very good things. Thanks for the very helpful, but challenging, reminder!

  2. Oh, a big Amen to this!! I’m retired and I STILL have days like this! And this list-living is one of the reasons why I am so glad that I signed up for the discipline of praying Morning Prayer on FB with Trinity. It centers me, and makes me sense the connections all around me. Blessings on your busy day, my friend!!!!