Today's Lectionary Text
When the Lord restored the fortunes of Zion,
Restore our fortunes, O Lord,
I recently have been reading “Mornings with Bonhoeffer: 100 Reflections of the Christian Life” by Donald McKim. I’m enjoying reading the writings of Dietrich Bonhoeffer and hearing McKim’s context where the readings came from in Bonhoeffer’s life. One particular reading connects with today’s psalm, Psalm 126. In this beautiful psalm of ascent, the visual imagery used paints a picture of the hope, peace, love and grace of God. The psalm writes of those who sow with tears will reap with songs of joy. Those who go out weeping, carrying seed to sow, will return with songs of joy, carrying sheaves with them. It is not that God’s way is easy without hardship. Through the hardship, there is always hope.
When Bonhoeffer was in prison during Christmas Eve 1943, he wrote to his niece and nephew about the emptiness of being separated from loved ones. He said he found that while it is possible to cope with the fact of separation, it is magnified when we anticipate the future with worry and anxiety. Then he advised “From first awakening until our return to sleep, we must commend and entrust the other person to God wholly and without reserve, and let our worries become prayer for the other persons.” (McKim, 189)
So, in this Advent season, we read this psalm of ascent in prayer to the people around us, proclaiming the hope and grace of God. We are a people who follow the Lord who have done great things.
-Rev. Nicole Conard
Young Adult Leadership & Campus Ministry Coordinator
Prayer for Reflection
O God, awaken us to see your way this Advent season. Help us to commend and entrust people to you without reserve. Thank you for your grace and love each day. In Christ’s name we pray, Amen.
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