The Book of Psalms is filled with words of assurance and comfort. Psalm 27 says: The Lord is the stronghold of my life; of whom shall I be afraid?….Hear, O Lord, when I cry aloud, be gracious to me and answer me!….Wait for the Lord; be strong, and let your heart take courage; wait for the Lord!
We have entered the season of Lent – a time when we typically focus on some difficult aspects of Christianity. That isn’t really hard to do in this day and age when we have so many reasons to feel despondent: war, terrorism, child abduction, murder, racism, elitism, politics, natural disasters, and deathly illnesses to just mention a few. All of these remind us of how difficult life can be.
Sometimes, it’s hard enough just to get out of bed, to hold your head up, to face each new day. And regardless of how we view the Bible (whether we consider it as the word of God, the inspired word of God, the inspiring word from God, or whether we feel it’s more of a historical document covering an ancient people’s faith and understanding of God), can we not find comfort in its pages as we face the challenging moments of our lives?
Regardless of our differences on how we may view the Bible, I believe we can all agree that the psalms offer us spiritual strength when we need it most. Like a song of strength, these are the pillars we lean on when we’re wallowing in life’s deepest and darkest valleys.
As you journey through Lent, I urge you to keep listening for the voice of our still-speaking God. The great theologian Karl Barth once said: The words on these pages may not be the word of God, but God’s word certainly speaks through them. And if you listen carefully enough, you’ll hear that word. It’s a word of hope, a word of comfort, a word of love.