The Lord has heard my supplication, the Lord accepts my prayer. Psalm 6:9
"Ask and you will receive, so that your joy may be complete." John 16:24
Psalm 6 is a prayer for recovery from grave illness. What a timely verse for today in this time. Sometimes, when one is asking for help from God during a time of great suffering, it feels as though God does not hear one's plea for help. One of the ways God lifts up one who may not be able to recover from a physical illness is to bring peace of mind and healing of the person's ravaged spirit.
This happened often for Paul as he preached and taught no matter whether he was imprisoned, being mocked and persecuted, being chased from any area where he was carrying on his ministry, etc. Often things were horrible for Paul physically, but he always had the comfort of knowing that God was with him. Because of his comfort in knowing God's presence in every situation and his total commitment to his work and his writings in Jesus' name, we have much to learn and to know about what it means to be a Christian. Paul's letters to his followers fill his writings in the New Testament with guidance, hope and peace.
Of course, feeling that God is always with one does not make the time of affliction easy, but it does bring a peacefulness in knowing that God does hear our cries and whispers asking for help and knows exactly what we need. Does one need to feel devastation when separated from loved ones as during this pandemic? Does one need to feel desperate for financial help during the loss of jobs? Does one need to feel helpless as work, school, life changes through no one's fault?
Does one know what will help in other seemingly hopeless life situations? I do not know the answers to these questions, but I do know that God listens and can bring the peace that passes all understanding. He can come as a still small voice, or in a way more obvious, but he is there and knows our every care. God's grace is sufficient.
Dear Lord and Savior, Healer of our ev'ry ill, light of each tomorrow, give us peace beyond our fear, and hope beyond our sorrow. You who know our fears and sadness, grace us with your peace and gladness; Spirit of all comfort, fill our hearts. In the pain of joy beholding how your grace is still unfolding, give us all your vision, God of love. Give us strength to love each other, ev'ry sister, ev'ry brother; Spirit of all kindness, be our guide. You who know each thought and feeling, teach us all your way of healing; Spirit of compassion, fill each heart.* Amen.
* Hymn text by Marty Haugen
Submitted by Florence Smallfield