Saturday, February 25, 2006

A Heart on Pilgrimage

I am not sure what to write today. I have been very humbled by the fact that other women are comforted by my writings. I write through tears to try to know where to go next. I think for this morning I will just share some Psalms that I found as I was looking for a scripture to use for a scrapbooking kit dealing with grief. Then we will see where that leads.....

Psalm 30:56 "...weeping may remain for a night, but rejoicing comes in the morning." I know this is true. My weeping has finally passed, but I have to say that there were times when I would have scoffed at this. I would have wondered where the joy was when I awoke still feeling miserable. I guess sometimes our "night and morning" are defined in a time frame that we can not understand.

Psalm 34:18 "...the LORD is close to the broken hearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit."

Psalm 57:1 "Have mercy on me, O God, have mercy on me, for in you my soul takes refuge. I will take refuge in the shadow of your wings until the disaster has passed."

Psalm 61:1-3 "Hear my cry, O God; listen to my prayer. From the ends of the earth I call to you, I call as my heart grows faint; lead me to the rock that is higher than I. For you have been my refuge, a strong tower against the foe. I long to dwell in your tent forever adn take refuge in the shelter of your wings. For you have heard my vows, O God; You have given me the heritage of those who fear your name."

Psalm 84:5 "Blessed are those whose strength is in you, who have set their hearts on pilgrimage. As they pass through the Valley of Baca, they make it a place of springs; the autumn rains also cover it with pools. They go from strength to strength, till each appears before God in Zion."

This last one really caught my eye. What does it mean to set your heart on pilgrimage? In the notes in my bible it says that as people were on their pilgrimage to the temple they passed through the Valley of Baca which was barren. What I am seeing this morning is that when our hearts are on a journey toward our God, and when we learn to draw our strength from our relationship with the Healer, then we will be able to define our lives in a different way. So much of our struggle is in how we interpret the events and circumstances in which we live. If the quality of my life depends on my own personal will power or abilities to do the things I need and want to do, then I will definitely fail every time. I simply can't succeed the way I think I need to on my own. Which leads me to the fact that we need to redefine success! Our one purpose in this life is to praise God. Our lives are supposed to be continual praise for Him. Forget all the goals. Forget all the callings. Forget all the work. Just think about how you might really be able to do just that one thing, no matter what condition your life is in. It might be very difficult to start, especially if you are dealing with a recent loss of a loved one. But if we could find a way to do that one thing, praise God in every moment, then a new perspective would surely arise and maybe our suffering would begin to lift.

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