Yesterday we watched Elijah slink into a cave and wish to die when things turned sour. Today we witness an entirely different response. The psalmist appears to be living in exile, where he is taunted by his enemies; life is difficult. What bothers the psalmist most is being unable to go to the temple to worship. There are tears, there are moments of deep sadness, but through it all the psalmist never loses sight of God and all God has done. Indeed, the times of trouble only seem to intensify the psalmist’s desire to be in God’s presence. He recalls times at the temple with the multitude of worshippers; he thinks on God’s steadfast love and he sings the thrice repeated refrain: Why are you cast down, O my soul?hope in God.
For the most part life is good. We enjoy family and friends, good health, meaningful employment and the beauty of God’s creation. But there are moments when life gets turned on its head: cancer, pink slips, wayward children, death of loved ones. During those moments we need to remember God’s faithfulness and, like the psalmist, trust in God our help.
Lord God, when times are tough, be our hope and strength. Amen. — DAB