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Lenten Devotions from Fourth Presbyterian Church

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

Today’s Scripture Reading | Psalm 107:1–7, 33–37

O give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;
   for his steadfast love endures forever.
Let the redeemed of the Lord say so,
   those he redeemed from trouble
and gathered in from the lands,
   from the east and from the west,
   from the north and from the south.

Some wandered in desert wastes,
   finding no way to an inhabited town;
hungry and thirsty,
   their soul fainted within them.
Then they cried to the Lord in their trouble,
   and he delivered them from their distress;
he led them by a straight way,
   until they reached an inhabited town.

He turns rivers into a desert,
   springs of water into thirsty ground,
a fruitful land into a salty waste,
   because of the wickedness of its inhabitants.
He turns a desert into pools of water,
   a parched land into springs of water.
And there he lets the hungry live,
   and they establish a town to live in;
they sow fields, and plant vineyards,
   and get a fruitful yield. (NRSV)

Every one of us, at various times in life encounters trouble in a variety of ways. Life is full of doubts, dangers, and troubles that can rob us of peace and security. When trouble comes it is easy to succumb to negativity, hopelessness or despair. To our benefit, in times of trouble, God can be found.

Psalm 107 is a song of thanksgiving that celebrates deliverance in times of trouble. The Psalmist reminds us that although we may be overwhelmed with trouble, God rescues us from everything that causes anguish.

In the Psalm there are four categories of trouble described that convey both peril and salvation during devastating conditions; some wandered aimlessly in the desert until God led by a straight way; some were ill then became healed; some traveled across a stormy ocean until God calmed the storms; and some sat miserably in prison until God released them.

Collectively, these four categories involve troubling situations that eventually realized deliverance. In each scenario the afflicted “cried to the Lord in their trouble,” and were miraculously delivered. Although the circumstances differ in each setting, all involved share the same glorious experience. God delivered.

What a beautiful reminder that God hears and answers when we pray. Prayer is important. It unleashes the miracles of Almighty God. If you find yourself in trouble, cry out to God for help. The Holy One will help and save. The lesson here is, never let your faith be deceived by life circumstances.

God responds to our every need, not because we have done anything to earn God’s help but out of God’s compassion. Always remember that God’s love is unwavering. God’s love is “steadfast.” God is for you.

Almighty God, we rejoice in you because you are an ever present help in times of trouble. Out of your steadfast love you provide for our every need. Thank you that your grace is designed for every life situation and Your love so great that nothing can separate us from you. Amen.

Written by Robert Crouch, Director of Volunteer Ministry

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