Today's Lectionary Text
O God, you are my God, I seek you,
my soul thirsts for you;
my flesh faints for you,
as in a dry and weary land where there is no water.
So I have looked upon you in the sanctuary,
beholding your power and glory.
Because your steadfast love is better than life,
my lips will praise you.
So I will bless you as long as I live;
I will lift up my hands and call on your name.
My soul is satisfied as with a rich feast,
and my mouth praises you with joyful lips
when I think of you on my bed,
and meditate on you in the watches of the night;
for you have been my help,
and in the shadow of your wings I sing for joy.
My soul clings to you;
your right hand upholds me.
But those who seek to destroy my life
shall go down into the depths of the earth;
they shall be given over to the power of the sword,
they shall be prey for jackals.
But the king shall rejoice in God;
all who swear by him shall exult,
for the mouths of liars will be stopped.
The first verse of this Psalm reminds me of when we were dairy farming in Nebraska and would have a drought. We would have to look further for hay and grazing. The cows would produce less milk and the banker would be more demanding for loan payments. We have been through droughts where I minister in Kansas too, and we prayed for months. When the rains came it was almost too wet for the farmers to bring in their harvest! We continued to praise God.
Jesus says the harvest is ready but the workers are few. Our summertime attendance has been low, but giving has been high. People are getting back into the habit of being active. Verses 2-8 shows that when we praise the Lord and bless His name day or night, His hand upholds us.
When my wife and I were agricultural missionaries in Zimbabwe in the 1960s and ’70s there were times when we experienced droughts and frustrations because of the political situation at the time. Those experiences brought us closer to the Lord. But we were able to turn over the projects to very capable co- worker Zimbabweans.
Verses 9-11 says that activities that tempt people’s attendance and giving will change. When we pray daily, study and question certain policies of our government and church, we can bridge gaps that will eventually bring peace between families, churches and communities.
Rev. Valjean Warman
Mayfield Federated Church
Prayer for Reflection
Dear Lord, Help us to continue relying on your promise of love and grace. Ebbs and flows of life can be frightening but your Peace will carry us through uncertain times. In Jesus name, Amen.