This week’s passages of Scripture are both poems and have the focus of darkness, hunger and thirst and finding refreshment in God. Lent is a time where we do focus on the desert times of life, the times when we feel at a distance to God and practice ways of sustaining and being filled even when it seems like all is lost.
I am reminded again this week of the fragility of life and that, as we said on Ash Wednesday, we are dust and to dust we shall return. May we be awake to see and hear the light of Christ in both the high times as well as those times when we are in the darkness of the desert.
Ho, everyone who thirsts,
come to the waters;
and you that have no money,
come, buy and eat!
Come, buy wine and milk
without money and without price. Why do you spend your money for that which is not bread,
and your labor for that which does not satisfy?
Listen carefully to me, and eat what is good,
and delight yourselves in rich food. Incline your ear, and come to me;
listen, so that you may live.
I will make with you an everlasting covenant,
my steadfast, sure love for David.
See, I made him a witness to the peoples,
a leader and commander for the peoples.
See, you shall call nations that you do not know,
and nations that do not know you shall run to you,
because of the LORD your God, the Holy One of Israel,
for he has glorified you.
Seek the LORD while he may be found,
call upon him while he is near;
let the wicked forsake their way,
and the unrighteous their thoughts;
let them return to the LORD, that he may have mercy on them,
and to our God, for he will abundantly pardon.
For my thoughts are not your thoughts,
nor are your ways my ways, says the LORD.
For as the heavens are higher than the earth,
so are my ways higher than your ways
and my thoughts than your thoughts.
“O God, you are my God, I seek you,
my soul thirsts for you;
my flesh faints for you,
as in a dry and weary land where there is no water.
So I have looked upon you in the sanctuary,
beholding your power and glory.
Because your steadfast love is better than life,
my lips will praise you.
So I will bless you as long as I live;
I will lift up my hands and call on your name.
My soul is satisfied as with a rich feast,
and my mouth praises you with joyful lips
when I think of you on my bed,
and meditate on you in the watches of the night;
for you have been my help,
and in the shadow of your wings I sing for joy.
My soul clings to you;
your right hand upholds me.
- What is one way you have been sustained during the dark times of your life?
- When was a time when you felt least connected to God? What was that experience like? If you were able to, how did you come out of it? If you weren’t, what do you think holds you back?
- What is one thing in your life that really gives you energy and sustains your well being?
Find one thing you do in your life this week, one activity or rhythm, and see if there is a way to turn it into a spiritual practice or worshipful space.