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Lenten Devotions from Fourth Presbyterian Church

Monday, August 14, 2017

Today’s Scripture Reading | Psalm 85:8–13

Let me hear what God the Lord will speak,
   for he will speak peace to his people,
   to his faithful, to those who turn to him in their hearts.
Surely his salvation is at hand for those who fear him,
   that his glory may dwell in our land.

Steadfast love and faithfulness will meet;
   righteousness and peace will kiss each other.
Faithfulness will spring up from the ground,
   and righteousness will look down from the sky.
The Lord will give what is good,
   and our land will yield its increase.
Righteousness will go before him,
   and will make a path for his steps. (NRSV)

“Let me hear what the Lord God says…”

What is God saying to me? I try and carve out time to listen, but it’s a struggle. It’s easier to scroll, click surf, or rewatch the tenth inning of game seven of the World Series.

Do I really want to listen to God? What will she tell me? “He speaks peace” but I often hold onto “foolish ways” or settle for conflict rather than stretch and do the work to forge reconciliation. Or I bask in praise for a goal met at work. Is that want God wants to discuss?

I also tune out the voices of parents who have lost children to violence. These problems seem too big for me to address.

What words am I waiting to hear?

Wouldn’t the Lord tell me to love and help my neighbor? Haven’t I heard this from the pulpit or through anthems from the choir or from my kids when they hear about a family in need? What’s holding me back? How can I pivot and respond to the voices calling me to love, help, and serve?

Dear gracious and loving Lord, help us slow down and savor your kingdom. Help us love our neighbors and plow through the inertia of doubt and fear. Help us to make a road for your steps, spreading your grace to our brothers and sisters. Amen.

Written by Ranjan Daniels, Member of Fourth Presbyterian Church

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