Great Plains Daily Devotional for 10/1/2018

Today please be in prayer for

Bishop of Great Plains Conference
Topeka District
Administrative Assistant to Bishop Saenz
Topeka District
Administrative Assistant-Episcopal Office & Clergy Excellence
Topeka District
Director, Clergy Excellence
Topeka District

Today's Lectionary Text

Psalm 5:1-12 

Listen to my words, Lord,
    consider my lament.
Hear my cry for help,
    my King and my God,
    for to you I pray.

In the morning, Lord, you hear my voice;
    in the morning I lay my requests before you
    and wait expectantly.
For you are not a God who is pleased with wickedness;
    with you, evil people are not welcome.
The arrogant cannot stand
    in your presence.
You hate all who do wrong;
    you destroy those who tell lies.
The bloodthirsty and deceitful
    you, Lord, detest.
But I, by your great love,
    can come into your house;
in reverence I bow down
    toward your holy temple.

Lead me, Lord, in your righteousness
    because of my enemies—
    make your way straight before me.
Not a word from their mouth can be trusted;
    their heart is filled with malice.
Their throat is an open grave;
    with their tongues they tell lies.
Declare them guilty, O God!
    Let their intrigues be their downfall.
Banish them for their many sins,
    for they have rebelled against you.
But let all who take refuge in you be glad;
    let them ever sing for joy.
Spread your protection over them,
    that those who love your name may rejoice in you.

Surely, Lord, you bless the righteous;
    you surround them with your favor as with a shield.

Today's Devotional

I found this passage highlighted in the bible of my teenage years.  I can clearly see the younger me leaning into these words.  What teenager doesn't want someone to listen to them and pay attention? 

I had my fair share of teenage angst and desperately wanted someone to hear me and understand me.  And I admit verses nine and ten stand out as I think back on that part of my life.  

Those verses read straight out of my middle and high school experiences where bullying and mean girls played central roles.

Not a word from their mouth can be trusted;
    their heart is filled with malice.
Their throat is an open grave;
    with their tongues they tell lies.
Declare them guilty, O God!
    Let their intrigues be their downfall.

I think anyone who has ever been bullied in either middle school or high school knows what I mean here.  I wanted someone to declare them guilty!

During this time I was invited by a classmate to a Christian youth weekend and I attended a seminar about praying without ceasing.  I embraced this concept and began talking to God at all times, without structure, whenever the need came to my mind.  He became my closest friend and confidant. There was no thought I needed to hide and nothing I could say to him could be misinterpreted or turned against me.   I did my fair share of teenage sighing, but he was always there to listen without judgement.

I'm not sure when I moved away from this practice, but this gentle nudge has me thinking that it might be the right time to renew the practice.  If teenage me could benefit, what could it do for adult me?  

Heavenly father, thank you for never failing to consider my sighing.  Help me to recall the faith of my childhood, for without it I could not make it through my days without your never ending love and grace.  Amen.
 
                                                                                                                                                                                          -Lisa Soukup

 

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