Word for the day Christian Education Forum
CHRIST WHO GIVES HOPEFUL VISIONPsalm 6
When we study the Book of Psalms, we can see that there are at least five types of Psalms: psalms of lament, royal psalms, thanksgiving psalms, wisdom psalms, and historical and prophetic psalms. Psalm 6 is a perfect example of a lament psalm. There are two types of lament psalms; community and individual. Community psalms of lament deal with situations of national crisis, which describes problems faced by all the people of God. Individual lament psalms address problems faced by one member of the people of God. Psalm 6 is an example of an individual lament psalm of David. The Anglican Church uses this psalm during 50 days Lent period, as it contains all the features of a lament psalm. This psalm is the first real lament of David to the Lord as his heart is consumed with thoughts of his enemies. He is depressed. We can feel the anxiety, fear, and sorrow in his words. The psalms of lament follow a pattern that begins with suffering and ends with glory. Usually, these psalms start on a negative, complaining note, but they end on a positive, hopeful vision.
David was seriously ill in body, deeply distressed in mind and spiritually sapped by the mounting pressures and numerous enemies that surrounded him on every side, which caused him to pen his distressing lament: “have mercy on me O Lord and heal my bones.. my soul is greatly troubled.' But David had not yet come to a full understanding that God is an ever-present help in time of trouble, that the mercies of God are new every morning, and that He is faithful to hear and respond to the cries of all His children - but He does it in His own time and in His own way.
David's first thought was that his sickness had been sent as a punishment from God, but although bitter circumstances can result from the consequences of our own our ungodly choices, difficulties, and distresses in life must by no means be attributed to God's displeasure. On the contrary, God often permits sickness and suffering to display His glory in our lives, which frequently results in our spiritual growth and hopeful vision of Christ.
David felt that heaven was deaf to his cries so that in the morning and at night, his pillow was drenched with his tears of self-pity. Nevertheless, the threats from his enemies were intense, real, and menacing, and he bemoaned the serious effect that their influence was having on his health and well-being.
David came to an understanding that God was right with him in the midst of all his trials and tribulations, and that God had heard his prayer. Therefore, David rejoiced with thanksgiving and praise, and prayed: “The Lord hath heard my cry for mercy; the Lord accepts my prayer”.
When like David we are encompassed by our enemies, ill in body, distressed in mind, and spiritually sapped, we should remember that the precious promises of God to all His children are 'yes' and 'amen' in Christ. And let us never forget that in Him we have access to the heavenly throne of grace and mercy to find help in times of need. But we need to approach Him reverently, prayerfully, and with a confident heart that He will help us to overcome all adverse circumstances, we may have to face in our lives and provide us with a joyful vision of hope in Christ.
During this Great Lent season, let us pray to God Almighty for his mercy to be showered upon us and fill our minds with the joyful vision of Christ in our day-to-day lives, Amen.
Heavenly Father, we believe that You are our God who hears and answers our prayers. Help us to look to You to supply all our needs according to Your riches in glory. Keep us from looking at the circumstances of life - but rather we pray that we may look to You in all circumstances of life.
Thought for the Day
God is our refuge and strength , a very pleasant help in trouble.
The Mar Thoma Church Staten Island, New York
Christian Education Forum, Diocese of NAE of the Mar Thoma Church