Psalm 42:1-8 (NRSV)
As a deer longs for flowing streams, so my soul longs for you, O God. My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When shall I come and behold the face of God? My tears have been my food day and night, while people say to me continually, "Where is your God?"
These things I remember, as I pour out my soul: how I went with the throng, and led them in procession to the house of God, with glad shouts and songs of thanksgiving, a multitude keeping festival. Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you disquieted within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my help and my God.
My soul is cast down within me; therefore I remember you from the land of Jordan and of Hermon, from Mount Mizar. Deep calls to deep at the thunder of your cataracts; all your waves and your billows have gone over me. By day the LORD commands his steadfast love, and at night his song is with me, a prayer to the God of my life.
Anxiety weighs down the human heart, but a good word cheers it up.
- Proverbs 12:25 (NRSV)
MY mother lay in her hospital bed recovering from surgery that had been followed by several complications. I never left her side. By the tenth day, I shed tears of sheer exhaustion. I was physically and spiritually tired. I couldn't even pray.
When a nurse saw my tears, she was genuinely concerned. "I don't know what's wrong with me," I said. "I'm so tired, I can't even seem to pray."
She smiled and said, "Remember, God knows our needs before we even ask. God knows your heart and the trouble you feel. Just let go and leave it up to him."
Her words encouraged me. When I lay down again, words from Psalm 42 came to mind: "As a deer longs for flowing streams, so my soul longs for you, O God." Then I remembered the promise from Psalm 42:8: "By day the LORD commands his steadfast love, and at night his song is with me." I slept a wonderfully deep sleep that night and woke up refreshed and inspired, ready to encourage others.
Prayer: Thank you, God, for people who encourage us and lift us up in your name. Amen.
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY:
Who needs my words of encouragement today?
By Rae Ellen Wooten, Texas