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Thirst for God

Today’s Reflection

IN THE SCRIPTURES faithful folk find no limits on what they can say to God. They understand that the living God has granted them freedom to express their distress, and they exercise this freedom to the fullest. If we listen thoughtfully to the biblical words, we begin to hear this all-encompassing freedom:

My soul thirsts for God,
for the living God.
When shall I come and behold
the face of God?
My tears have been my food
day and night,
while people say to me continually,
“Where is your God?” –Psalm 42:2-3

This freedom allows the faithful to express deep longing. It permits them to cry out against isolation and even to accuse God:
“O Lord, God of my salvation,
when, at night, I cry out in your presence,
let my prayer come before you;
incline your ear to my cry.

For my soul is full of troubles,
and my life draws near to Sheol.
I am counted among those who go down to the Pit;
I am like those who have no help,
like those forsaken among the dead,
like the slain that lie in the grave,
like those whom you remember no more. —Psalm 88:1-5

Exercising this freedom, a psalmist may pour forth impatience:
“How long, O Lord? Will you forget me forever?
How long will you hide your face from me?”—Psalm 13:1

– Steve Doughty
To Walk in Integrity

From pages 87-88 of To Walk in Integrity: Spiritual Leadership in Times of Crisis by Steve Doughty. Copyright © 2004 by Steve Doughty. All rights reserved. Used by permission of Upper Room Books. http://bookstore.upperroom.org/ Learn more about or purchase this book.

Today’s Question

Find a Psalm that expresses your longing for God. Share your thoughts.

Today’s Scripture

As you go, proclaim the good news, ‘The kingdom of heaven has come near.’
Matthew 10:7, NRSV

This Week: pray for someone who is experiencing a new beginning. Submit your prayer to The Upper Room Living Prayer Center or share it in the comment section.

Did You Know?

In need of prayer? The Upper Room Living Prayer Center is a 7-day-a-week intercessory prayer ministry staffed by trained volunteers. Call 1-800-251-2468 or visit The Living Prayer Center website.

This week we remember: Boniface (June 13).

Lectionary Readings

(Courtesy of Vanderbilt Divinity Library)

Sponsored by Upper Room Ministries ®. Copyright © 2017 | PO Box 340004 | Nashville, TN 37203-0004 | USA

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{ 9 comments… add one }

  • Mary Ng Shwu Ling June 17, 2017, 2:05 am

    Psalm 42

    1 As the deer pants for streams of water,
    so my soul pants for you, my God.
    2 My soul thirsts for God, for the living Go

  • Mary Ng Shwu Ling June 17, 2017, 2:06 am

    Psalm 42

    1 As the deer pants for streams of water,
    so my soul pants for you, my God.
    2 My soul thirsts for God, for the living God

  • robert moeller June 17, 2017, 5:28 am

    Thankful for a good supervisor who realized there was a miscommunication,
    reached out, and corrected it. Erich does not have to train and qualify for all three jobs, he will train for the job he applied for and so he has a job. Thank You, Lord. It was quite a day. Prayers for someone with a new beginning were answered.

    Have to search among the many helpful psalms. I’m not sure which is a favorite. Psalm 23 is very familiar as is the passage Mary gave from Psalm 42.
    Psalms are very positive, uplifting, encouraging, a great book to read in times of stress.

    Prayers of concern for all the UR family on this Father’s Day weekend. Prayers of thanks remembering my Dad and Grandfathers.

  • robert moeller June 17, 2017, 5:35 am

    Psalm 100
    100:1 Make a joyful noise to the LORD, all the earth.

    100:2 Worship the LORD with gladness; come into his presence with singing.

    100:3 Know that the LORD is God. It is he that made us, and we are his; we are his people, and the sheep of his pasture.

    100:4 Enter his gates with thanksgiving, and his courts with praise. Give thanks to him, bless his name.

    100:5 For the LORD is good; his steadfast love endures forever, and his faithfulness to all generations.

  • Julie June 17, 2017, 7:59 am

    Different psalms speak to me at different times and in different manners. I agree with the author, what I receive froom the psalms is the feeling of freedom to come to God in whatever frame of mind I am in and to speak openy and honestly regarding my feelings, life circumstances and faith. I feel as though God will listen and love me no matter if I rejoice or curse Him. I also see in the palms that eventually even the worse circumstance wil ease, if only with time and my acceptance. I can read that God is by my side at all times, He may not remove my pain and change the circumstance but He will hold me and guide me through the depths.
    Bessings for all of our small UR community, especially those who have been absent.

    • robert moeller June 18, 2017, 3:37 am

      Julie wrote, “I can read that God is by my side at all times, He may not remove my pain and change the circumstance but He will hold me and guide me through the depths.
      Blessings for all of our small UR community, especially those who have been absent.”
      Yes, Julie, I too have felt God “hold me and guide me through the depths.”
      Prayers for all the UR family, I miss our usual posters.

  • Ken Linscott June 18, 2017, 3:53 am

    Our “Journey 21” group joined this morning in worship to consider trees that God had created in our New Zealand. I share this part of our discussion: The Story of a New Zealand River: Jane Mander

    p11 The river was a mere thread at the bottom of the valley, which was walled up on either side by precipitous hills that kept the sunlight out until midday. From the mangrove banks to the sky a great variety of trees fifty shades of evergreen covered every yard of space. There was a riotous spring colour in the forest, voluptuous gold and red in the clumps of yellow kowhai and the crimson rata, and there were masses of greeny white clematis and bowers of pale tree ferns to rest the satiated eye. Stiff laurel-like puriris stood beside the drooping fringe of the lacy rimu; hard blackish kahikateas brooded over the oaklike ti-kori with its lovely scarlet berry.
    Nowhere in the world is there more variety. Here nature hated the very beginnings of monotony. So she scattered a little of everything about those wonderful hills. Towering arrogantly above all else, on the crests and down the spurs, stood groups of the kauri, the giant timber tree of New Zealand, whose great grey trunks, like pillars in the ancient halls of Karnak, shot up seventy and eighty feet without a knot or branch, and whose colossal heads, swelling up into the sky, made a cipher of every tree near.

    • robert moeller June 18, 2017, 4:10 am

      Long a place I hoped to one day see, your post with a description of New Zealand trees and plants, just increases the desire. God certainly blessed New Zealand with beauty. That was an amazing read. Thank you.

    • Mary Ng Shwu Ling June 18, 2017, 4:22 am

      Indeed, New Zealand is a country full of beautiful trees and green grass. I’ve been there several years ago. I still remembered my family stayed at a diary farm and we got to feed a lamb milk on a milk bottle.

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