Be Still Know
Psalm 119:28 NLT
‘I weep with sorrow; encourage me by your word.’
Sorrow has the potential to take over one’s life. It is a feeling of deep distress caused by loss, disappointment, or other misfortune. It exercises control over emotions and thoughts, and expresses itself physically. The psalmist speaks of how his very soul has melted away from sorrow.
The once-solid reality of ice when it melts into liquid drains away leaving nothing to indicate its former presence beyond a damp patch. Sorrow can take someone who is substantial and real and bring them to a place where the life drains from them, as if they are no longer present.
No one can avoid sorrow. Yet, the battle is always to find a way through sorrow, allowing what has drained away to reconfigure into something real and permanent. It is only God’s word that can provide a means to navigate through sorrow.
Life is presented as something that somehow operates above the level of disappointment and grief. But that is a lie. Political discourse, endless adverts and other sources can conspire to assert that all is well in the best of all possible worlds. But Jesus is at the forefront of those denying that false hope and imagined reality. God asserts that while sorrow may break in upon us, it need not consume us for we have the capacity to find life even as we stare death in the face. Initially we have absolutely no defence to offer against the ravages of sorrow, yet slowly as we continue we find that in Christ, we have One who will over time lift us up and stand us upon our feet again.
When British astronaut Tim Peake returned from six months in the space station orbiting earth living in an unnatural sterile environment, the capsule door was opened. As he was carried away he described the intensity of smelling the scent of wild flowers, feeling the breeze on his face and inhaling real fresh air. When sorrow locks us into a sterile, unfamiliar world, it detaches us from all we thought we knew. We have to find a way to breathe fresh air again.
QUESTION: If you’re dealing with sorrow, can you also find reasons to hope?
PRAYER: Lord of all hope, comfort those who mourn today.