Where can I go from your spirit? Or where can I flee from your presence? If I ascend to heaven, you are there; if I make my bed in Sheol, you are there. If I take the wings of the morning and settle at the farthest limits of the sea, even there your hand shall lead me, and your right hand shall hold me fast. (Psalm 137:7-10)
Ever felt all alone? Ever wondered where God is, especially during difficult times? Ever questioned if anyone really understands you or would accept you at your very worst?
If you have ever asked yourself any of these questions, I would invite you to read and pray with Psalm 137:1-17.
The basic message of this psalm is this: God is always with us; He goes with us wherever we go; He will share whatever we are going through, and He’s always at our side.
One of the most prevalent and painful issues that I have consistently heard during my life as a priest is people feeling lonely. Even though we are more connected through social media, Facebook, and Zoom meetings than previous generations, I’m not sure if we are more emotionally and personally connected.
The epidemic that we are living through elicits many emotions: fear, dread, panic, anger, confusion, frustration, boredom, impatience—the list goes on. Even if people are living in closer proximity to their family members, I know that many are feeling rather isolated, disconnected, and lonely right now.
Although I’m not against anyone’s desire to dress up for church, I do think we can cause ourselves some problems when we think we need to buff up in order to be with God. If we could actually ever get all pulled together for God, He wouldn’t have had to send Jesus.
Our relationship with God is never about our being good enough for Him but always about Him being loving enough for us. God sent Jesus to be with us for many reasons, one of which is that we would trust that there is no part of the human condition that God does not know and will not share with us. This means that we are never actually and ultimately alone.
Jesus is the fulfillment of the promises in today’s psalm. He is our hope that we are never alone and that no mood, no acting out, no epidemic, no ugly thoughts or words or actions, no fear, anger, or worry can keep us from His love or keep Him from desiring to share every aspect of our lives with us.
- Where do you most need Jesus right now?
- If you more often remembered that Jesus is always with you, how would your life change?
- Trusting that Jesus is at your side, what might He be asking you to do or say during this time?