Thursday, June 23, 2016

Word for the day by Christian Education Forum

People of God - Flock of Christ
Psalm 80
 
Kiara George

Canadian MTC, Toronto, Canada.
17 But let your hand be upon the one at your right hand, the one whom you made strong for yourself.18 Then we will never turn back from you; give us life, and we will call on your name.19 Restore us, O Lord God of hosts; let your face shine, that we may be saved.
 
Our meditation for today, also titled as a Prayer for Israel's Restoration is from Psalm 80. The lament in the Psalmist's voice who cries out asking the Lord, "how long will you be angry with your people’s prayers?" (vs.4) or when he beckons God to, " look down from heaven, and see; have regard for this vine, the stock that your right hand planted" (vs.14-15) is hard to ignore. It is a plea which resonates with the people of God even today. Many biblical commentators have interpreted the 'vine' to represent the Church of God with Christ at the 'root' and all the believers as the 'branches', thereby showcasing the increasing struggle of being planted in a world which continues to test the very foundations of the Church. As we read Psalm 80, we will find that the Psalmist struggles with understanding why God would deliver His people, only to watch them suffer. Yet, in spite of feeling ignored by the Creator, the Psalmist continues to ask God to restore his people and save them. Amidst the paradox of a silence which seems so deafening, he still finds himself seeking God amidst it all. Why? Through it all, the Psalmist acknowledges who God is! The Good Shepherd. The One who lead Joseph like a flock, enthroned upon the Cherubim. The Lord God of Hosts! The reverence placed upon the Creator is humbling to read.
           Keeping this in mind, let us examine our intentions and reflect upon the petitions we bring before God as His people. Do we ask for our burdens to be removed instead of asking for the strength to endure them? Most often, we tend to focus on our sufferings, never quite realizing that through it all, we endure them with the help of His grace. Our endurance amidst trials is one of our greatest testimonies as the Church of God and flock of Christ.  

PRAYER

Lord Jesus, we give You thanks for Your Grace which continues to restore us always. We praise You and magnify You for who You are. Help us, O Lord, to be ceaseless in our prayers to You, seeking You first always in every step of our journey through this life. In Your matchless Name we pray - Amen.
THOUGHT FOR THE DAY:
"Rejoice always, pray without ceasing, give thanks in all circumstances; for this is the will of God in Christ Jesus for you" - 1 Thess. 5: 16-18