Slow your breathing and become aware of the taking in and letting out of your breath. Focus on putting things aside so you will be open to what God is saying to you today.
Psalm 30 (NRSV)
I will extol you, O LORD, for you have drawn me up,
and did not let my foes rejoice over me.
O LORD my God, I cried to you for help,
and you have healed me.
O LORD, you brought up my soul from Sheol,
restored me to life from among those gone down to the Pit.
Sing praises to the LORD, O you his faithful ones,
and give thanks to his holy name.
For his anger is but for a moment;
his favor is for a lifetime.
Weeping may linger for the night,
but joy comes with the morning.
As for me, I said in my prosperity,
“I shall never be moved.”
By your favor, O LORD,
you had established me as a strong mountain;
you hid your face;
I was dismayed.
To you, O LORD, I cried,
and to the LORD I made supplication:
“What profit is there in my death,
if I go down to the Pit?
Will the dust praise you?
Will it tell of your faithfulness?
Hear, O LORD, and be gracious to me!
O LORD, be my helper!”
You have turned my mourning into dancing;
you have taken off my sackcloth
and clothed me with joy,
so that my soul may praise you and not be silent.
O LORD my God, I will give thanks to you forever.
Have you ever been so down and out that it seemed there was no hope? Do you ever feel like God has turned away from you? You wouldn’t be the first one to feel this way.
Consider the psalmist’s tale in today’s reading. Consider Jesus, who quoted a psalm to ask why God had forsaken him as he hung dying on the cross. From the depths of our despair, we may only be able to cry out in our misery to the One who cares.
Let us cry out in audacious honesty to God—even when we’re angry. God is big enough and secure enough to hear our deepest cries—even the incoherent ones that come out in groans too deep for words. God honors the honest cries of God’s children who know that God is the source of their strength. Mourning clothes get replaced with party clothes. Tombs turn into doorways to life. God is glorified in our living, laughing, and joyful praise.
Patient, all-knowing God, hear us when we cry out to you! Thank you for hearing and understanding our cries and our needs more surely than we can articulate them. Help us to hold on in the hard times. Lead us through the dark valleys and on to the real life that comes only from you. We will give you thanks forever! We pray in the name of the one who brings us from death to life, Jesus our Lord. Amen.
Go with God.