March 27, 2013

Companionship of the Lord

By Grace Parker, a senior English and Bible and religion double major
SCRIPTURE: Psalm 116:1-2, 12-19 (NRSV)
DEVOTIONAL:

In our culture that is addicted to fast solutions and technological convenience, God offers something different — a long-term and transparent relationship. All too often, I find myself scanning Facebook statuses or reading friends’ blogs in the hopes of finding some relational connection. However, these mechanisms do not allow for the immediate and two-sided interactions with people who are physically present with me.

God continually invites us into relationship. In today’s Scripture, the psalmist says that he loves and calls on the Lord because God heard his cry and prayers. God listens and we, yearning for authentic relationship, must respond with thanksgiving and humility as we hold up our side of the relationship.

God’s companionship has been a comfort to me as I’ve felt the emotional distance from family and friends created by long-distance and international travel. During my semester abroad in Peru, I initially felt disoriented by my separation from so many people who I normally relied on for support. Turning to God for relationship, through reading the Bible, praising with the church I was working with, and moments of stillness, deepened my awareness of the mutuality expected by God.

As we experience emotional alienation and yearn for true relationship, let us remember the Lord, who hears our voice and answers with love.

SCRIPTURE: Psalm 116:1-2, 12-19 (NRSV)
I love the Lord, because he has heard
my voice and my supplications.
Because he inclined his ear to me,
therefore I will call on him as long as I live.
What shall I return to the Lord
for all his bounty to me?
I will lift up the cup of salvation
and call on the name of the Lord,
I will pay my vows to the Lord
in the presence of all his people.
Precious in the sight of the Lord
is the death of his faithful ones.
O Lord, I am your servant;
I am your servant, the child of your serving-maid.
You have loosed my bonds.
I will offer to you a thanksgiving sacrifice
and call on the name of the Lord.
I will pay my vows to the Lord
in the presence of all his people,
in the courts of the house of the Lord,
in your midst, O Jerusalem.
Praise the Lord!

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Comments (9)

  1. Thanks for sharing. In our country we seem to concentrate on places that have a possibility of “hot war ” such as Iran or North Korea. Meanwhile, our neighbors to the south do not get the attention that our country ought to give them. Blessings on you during this Holy Week and throughout the rest of your education and your life’s work.

    Norm Morford March 27, 2013 |
  2. Thank you, Grace, for your gentle reminder and assurance that nothing can replace spending time with the Lord. I always look forward to my daily happy half hour with Jesus in the Holy Eucharist.
    Easter Blessings,
    Mervyn

    Mervyn Carapiet March 27, 2013 |
  3. I love your description of “long-term and transparent” for the relationship God offers us. It’s a good reminder to be present and participate.

    Ann Hostetler March 27, 2013 |
  4. Yes, I too, thank you, Grace, for your reflections on our possible “long term and transparent relationship” with the Lord, that does bring us blessings and renewal.

    Wilma Shank March 27, 2013 |
  5. Thank you for a beautiful reflection.

    Ann Whitaker March 27, 2013 |
  6. I’m so thankful God seeks my heart and that we have this open, intimacy. I find times of need draw me closer and, like you, my awareness is deepened. Thanks for your reminder of God’s continual invitation to relationship.

    Ruth March 27, 2013 |
  7. Grace people sometimes fail us but God never lets us down thank you for reminding me of this

    Bob March 27, 2013 |
  8. Grace, such a gift to be reminded of relationship as the heart of faith as we prepare for Easter!
    Blessings

    Frances March 27, 2013 |
  9. Thanks for the reminder of our deep grounding in God!

    Nelson Kraybill March 27, 2013 |