S (Scripture): Lamentations 5:15 Our hearts no longer have any joy; our dancing is turned to mourning. 16 The crown has fallen from our head; woe to us, for we have sinned! 17 Because of this, our hearts are sick; because of these things, we can hardly see through our tears. 18 For wild animals are prowling over Mount Zion, which lies desolate.
19 But you, O Lord, reign forever; your throne endures from generation to generation. 20 Why do you keep on forgetting us? Why do you forsake us so long?
21 Bring us back to yourself, O Lord, so that we may return to you; renew our life as in days before, 22 unless you have utterly rejected us and are angry with us beyond measure.
O (Observation): Humility. Desperation. Weakness. Israel mourns for what she used to be. She realizes she is no longer favored by God, and accepts due punishment.
Yet, she remains hopeful…even just the slightest bit. And thanks to a God who loves beyond measure, perhaps, she believes, The Lord will renew her life.
And yet…she won’t take this for granted.
A (Application): The Pit. Hopelessness. Desperation.
A feeling of hopelessness can overwhelm us. Difficult clients. Disrespectful children. Finances in disarray.
And that can lead to a distanced relationship with God. We can begin to feel like we’re not worthy to be in God’s presence. Like we shouldn’t bother God. And yet, these are exactly the moments when God reaches out to us most.
We stumble and falter along the way. We err and push God away. And yet, God’s reach is longer than ours. Even with fully extended arms, questioning whether or not God can love someone like “me,” God holds on…with a sure and mighty grip…holding on to us with something like a grab at the scruff of our neck…which puts us back on our feet…which leads to an embrace.
God’s reach is longer than our pushing and shoving. Israel knew this first-hand, as God sent his Son to set them and all of us free – once and for all. May we know God’s reach in our lives, especially when we’re down in the pit.
What pit are you in? Do you sense God’s presence? Are you inviting God to be a part of that struggle with you? Perhaps you will dig around and find bars of gold down there – moments in which you sense God really is trying to help you out of that pit, with grace, mercy, and people to work with you along the way.
P (Prayer): Lord, you reach out to us, even when we try to push you away. We thank you for never giving up on us. Amen.