March 18, 2020

Published March 19, 2020 by St Matthews Lutheran Church in Daily Message

1I lift up my eyes to the hills —
from where will my help come?
2My help comes from the LORD,
who made heaven and earth.

                                  Psalm 121: 1,2

Our seminary “preaching teacher” required two “preaching” classes. The first was understandably about preaching New Testament texts. The second was to be focused on texts from the Hebrew Scriptures. Though it wasn’t my first choice, I studied preaching from the psalms. I learned a lot about a book that I hadn’t really paid much attention to prior to landing in the class.

The psalms are poetry. As such, they address the whole gamut of human emotions – lament, complaint, praise, thanksgiving. I’ve often told people who are struggling to turn to the psalms – the words of these “hymns” give voice to everything we think and feel.

We are facing a time of unprecedented anxiety as we try to respond faithfully to the pandemic of COVID-19. Normal routines have been more than disrupted in some cases. When we need the contact of others the most, we are asked to practice social distancing and self-isolation. We ask ourselves – and God – from where will my help come? And the psalmist replies – My help comes from the Lord…..

We turn to the Lord, our God.

Let us pray:

Almighty and merciful God, you alone can bring calmness and peace. Grant to us, your children, a strong sense of your presence and confidence in you. In our anxiety, surround us with your care and help us to lay our cares on you, through Jesus Christ, our Savior and Lord. Amen.