I’ve been writing a lot in my paper journal or on my computer in documents that I’ve begun labeling whatever emotion I feel when I open the blank page. Anger, doubt, anxiety, fear, hope, questions. One exultant document is titled Jesus Is Greater.
These are my Psalms.
One thing I love about the Bible is that it often expresses the emotions that I don’t think people like to see linked up with Christianity. Nevertheless, they are emotions we all feel. God is not afraid of them. I also don’t believe he’s waiting for us to quickly get over them. I think he welcomes our negative emotions as freely as our positive ones because what he wants most is relationship with us- however we feel…
This morning in church there was no formal sermon. A pastor gave his testimony and then we read Psalm 27 in stages, singing worship songs in between. This was the perfect Psalm for me to read today and I was especially blessed by verses 12-14:
“Give me not up to the will of my adversaries; for false witnesses have risen against me,
and they breathe out violence.
I believe that I shall look upon the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living!
Wait for the Lord; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the Lord!”
At first glance, we may not always be able to identify with David. After all, I do not have literal armed men pursuing me to take my life. But immediately upon reading these verses today, I thought of how I spent many days of this last week. Old lies and new ones were swarmed around my head, clouding my vision and my hearing, taking sharp bites out of my face and my hands as I tried to bat them away.
Do you know the ones I mean? Lies about who I really am and why I exist.
This is why I love books like the Psalms and Job. Real people with real questions and struggles who lay it all out for God to hear. And just as Job, or David speak plainly about how difficult things are, they always remember to remember that God is still good. God is always good.
This week, false witnesses were gathered about me with violent words and today as I pleaded with God for help, he spoke those words from the page, written by his friend David so long ago, “Peggy, you will look upon the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait! Take courage!”
It may seem small, but hope is a powerful weapon against those sometimes debilitation lies.