The many bad things happening around the world, and even here at home, seem to interfere with my digestive system and my emotional well-being. Too many times lately I’ve sensed that watching and listening to the news have become dangerous to my health. Maybe I should just stop knowing what is happening in the world.
It is all too easy to become discouraged, depressed, fearful and grouchy. I find myself uttering the cry of the writer who wrote the first verse of this Psalm. “I cry out to you from the depths – Lord, listen to my voice.”
The psalmist does not share the reasons for his desperate cry, but he recognized that if the Lord kept track of sins, no one would “stand a chance.” Perhaps he was aware of something which was disturbing his sense of peace, or maybe he had become aware of something that disturbed his relationship to God. Verse 4 sug-gests that he honored the Lord’s ability to forgive sin.
These verses remind me that forgiveness is dependent upon my willingness to confess the reality of sin in my own life.
There are no quick, simple or easy solutions for the problems which contribute to our cries for help these days. However, I don’t think running away from newspaper headlines or television reports will solve anything.
What then? The constant bombardment of bad news has made me aware that I need GOD’S GOOD NEWS of the Gospel. Words of faith, hope and love are needed more than the news from a world that seems to have gone crazy.
As I read Psalm 130 in the Common English Study Bible, it is necessary to turn the page to find the next verse (verse 5). “I hope, Lord, my whole being hopes, and I wait for God’s promise.” (Emphasis added.)
I mention turning the page on purpose because it emphasizes, for me, the fact that I and anyone who call upon the Lord’s name need to turn down the volume of the newscaster’s words in order to seek and listen for the voice of God. Spending more time communicating with the Eternal God sounds like a much more helpful way to respond to all the disturbing news of our day.
The Almighty God, Creator, Redeemer and Sustainer of All is the only One who has the power and ability to renew and restore all things.
The psalmist says, “Wait for the Lord!” Why? Because faithful love is with the Lord; because great redemp-tion is with our God! God redeemed Israel. God’s promises are eternally true for us as well.
The psalmist urges us to wait “more than the night watch waits for morning!” We need to pray for the strength to obey those words of counsel. We want instant solutions. Nights can be very long in these troublesome and dangerous times. It has probably never been easy to WAIT for morning. I find myself asking God, in my pray-er time, to help me do the waiting these days.
- Cathleen Narowitz
Penacook United Church and their pastor Jerry McCann
Community Christian Fellowship, Plainfield, CT, and their pastor Linda Hirtle
ABC/VNH Institute for Learning: staff, board members and students