Carry us, oh Lord
By Pastor Nora Mendyk
United Methodist Church, Grant
We can always count on the Psalms to give us what we need no matter what our circumstances. When we question God, there’s a Psalm for us. When we are overjoyed, there’s a Psalm for us. When we are unbelievably sad, there’s a Psalm for us. There is one that provides imagery to which we can always turn. “The Lord is the strength of his people, a fortress of salvation for his anointed one. Save your people and bless your inheritance; be their shepherd and carry them forever.” (Psalm 28: 8,9) Carry us, oh Lord.
The Lord carries us through many tough situations in life. The book of Job in the Bible addresses the problem of bad things happening to good people.
Job, a wealthy, upright man, loses everything–his family, his possessions, his health–everything. His friends say that he must have done something horribly wrong to cause these things to happen. No. His wife implies that God hates him, so he might as well curse God and die. No.
In this scenario, God allows things to happen to Job, he does not cause them. In our scenario, we live in a fallible world where accidents happen and illness is a part of this life. Does God allow things to happen so we can develop the character of a strong person or learn a lesson? I would like to say ‘no’. But maybe ‘yes’ in some situations, and maybe ‘no’ in others.
If there is anything that we learn from Job, it is that when we are in unspeakable pain, we can speak it to God. In the end, Job complains to God speaking his truth of frustration and questioning. When he was in unspeakable pain, he was very honest with God.
In our relationship with God, He can always handle our doubt and questioning. The question of why bad things happen to us may never be answered to our satisfaction. But the question of, “Is God with us through it all?,” is a resounding “YES.” We all have questions that come up in life and we say, “When I get to heaven, I’m going to ask the Lord....”. Some people of faith project that when we get to heaven those questions will all dissipate on the other side as we see and understand completely how it all fits together in God’s kingdom. “Now we see but a poor reflection as in a mirror; then we shall see face to face. Now I know in part; then I shall know full, even as I am fully known.” (I Corinthians 13:12)
Until then, we continue to dialog with God about our lives. We tend to alternately complain, then have faith, then complain. God is with us through it all. And yes, our Lord carries us. So no matter what, turn to the imagery of Psalm 28:9 Carry Us Always, Oh Lord!