Monday, May 15, 2017

Faithful

Today's reflection on the Daily Texts:

Do not, O Lord, withhold your mercy from me; let your steadfast love and your faithfulness keep me safe forever. - Psalm 40:11

May the God of peace himself sanctify you entirely; and may your spirit and soul and body be kept sound and blameless at the coming of our Lord Jesus Christ. The one who calls you is faithful, and he will do this. - 1 Thessalonians 5:23-24

Two-year reading texts: Psalm 65:1-8; Proverbs 7; 1 Corinthians 14:20-35

Psalm 40 is a psalm of thanks to God for deliverance from trouble, and it uses the image of God "setting my feet upon a rock" to talk about God's faithfulness in need. We all know how different kinds of ground can feel under our feet. Soft sand, hard to get any traction in; miry muck, wet and sticky, gluing your boots to the ground; loose gravel or shale, treacherously making your feet slip or roll. A solid rock is firm and reliable. It gives a sense of ease and confidence. From there, we can much more easily take off and go other places, do other things. Or we can make the rock a strong foundation for a permanent structure.

These are all good images of God's faithfulness. Life is risky, and it does involve a journey of growth and change over time. We need that faithfulness as our place to call home, to lean on, to come back and get our bearings, to keep us centered and safe.

Today's scriptures also focus on God's action. The journey is ours, and we can decide what direction to strike out in, what paths to choose, where to step and where to stand. But more active and dynamic than just a rock, God is with us all along the way. God oversees, guides, provides safety, reminds us of who we are and whose we are, even when we feel lost or unsafe or far from home. Like the photo of a church built on a rock, God provides not only a home base to which we can return, but a faith that goes with us everywhere. Even when we are weak in our own faith, God's faithfulness is strength for us.

My prayer today is for the comfort and peace and confidence of God's faithfulness for all who need it. In easy or hard times, at every stage of the journey, God is our strength.

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