Why, O Lord, do you stand far off? -Psalm 10
Whether one believes in God or not, most people know what it’s like to be lonely, the kind of loneliness that bears weight.
Some can be alone in a crowd, or on stage or in an empty room. Solitude may rejuvenate, but loneliness bears the shadow of a diminished life, a life that is over.
Loneliness can take on the form of helplessness in face of something wrong, a moral failure, or the neglect of precious resources. …
“Let them know they are only human.” -Psalm 9:20
“Let the nations know they are only human,” declares the poet in Psalm 9. This is not a slight against humanity, nor an excuse from doing the right thing, but it is a simple fact. There are those in the text that are so certain they are right, they are no longer listening to God or one another.
Their resistance is fear-based and politically-charged. They are fearful because the world they once knew is changing. They are politically-driven because they want a new ruler who is not God.
They represent perhaps…
O Lord, Our Sovereign, how majestic is your name in all the earth. -Ps. 8
I’m told I was two years old when I made my first trip to Colorado. We took family vacations in the summer. The drive alone was spectacular, but the first glimpse of the mountains in the distance (as a kid from Texas) was breathtaking. I dare say I found a home there along the trails and streams of the Rockies.
I learned Blue Spruce, Douglass Fir, Aspen and Weeping Willow. I learned Rainbow, Brown, Cutthroat and Brook. …
Breaking unhealthy cycles of behavior through meditation and prayer.
The term gaslighting is nothing new for some, especially for those held victim to it. Gaslighting can be defined as manipulation by psychological or emotional means causing another to question their reality. It is an attempt to dismiss another’s reality often causing great trauma.
Gaslighting may take on a variety of forms. When the country music band, The Chicks released their acclaimed song, Gaslighter, it was eye-opening to see how many people identified with Natalie Maine’s experience of having been ‘gaslit’ through a long and tumultuous divorce. The song gave the…
There is healing in naming our suffering and hope.
“And it stoned me to my soul,” belts out Van Morrison as he described an experience of longing and catharsis as a kid. Whether a hunger or thirst or desire for healing, human longing is real. So too, the poet in Psalm 6 expresses the deep-lodged kind of longing that emerges from a soul in need.
Finding Health and Wholeness in Psalm 5.
Moving through Paths of Morning Ritual
I was on the trail this morning. The sun was out. The air was cool for July. Shadows crossed an earthen path beneath an arch of trees.
“This is sanctuary,” I thought to myself, “one of the many.” The meandering path (a little over a mile) wound its way through a forest up and down hills. It was quiet, but for the sound of an occasional bird or breeze. I prayed.
External and Internal Landscapes
The poet in Psalm 5 is up early. We can imagine a…
Psalm 4: Holding space and empathy.
Narcissism is defined as “selfishness, involving a sense of entitlement, a lack of empathy, and a need for admiration.” In psychoanalytic circles, narcissism is cited as a personality disorder to be taken with great seriousness and care.
What we learn from these and perhaps our own experience is that narcissism is real and difficult for the one living with a narcissist.
It is unfortunate that the term narcissism has become such an irresistible by-word for some that it is often used to describe any person who is driven, self-confident or rubs others the wrong…
Finding a way forward in Psalm 3
“God, do you see this?” asks the poet in Psalm 3, “Enemies past counting! Enemies sprouting like mushrooms! Mobs of them all around me, roaring their mockery.” -The Message
I imagine most of us have been there. Whether an enemy or a problem or a day full of troubles, sometimes they seem to come out of nowhere. Other times, the source is clear.
In any case, the poet is being pursued by “trouble.” There are enemies on all sides. …
Psalm 2: A welcome antidote to a culture of complaint.
Psalm 2 may not be the most glamorous, but it bears a truth worth telling. A person has been called upon to lead.
This was no ordinary person. The selection process was lengthy. Just when it was thought that all of the best candidates had been considered, there was David, a shepherd, out tending sheep.
Cultivating an Interior Life of Contemplation and Prayer
David was not leadership material by most standards. He did not have the pedigree that some wanted, but he did have that one intangible quality worth noting…
Reflection on Psalm 1
It was suggested to me some time ago to read and pray through the Psalms. Taking one Psalm a day, I would read, journal and write out a prayer. Today I find myself drawn to those ancient songs again.
For example, Psalm 1 is an invitation to life, a life that consists of choices within the context of a larger story. We choose what paths we travel, paths that were here long before we got here.
We choose the kind of people we wish to be and we can choose whether to be grounded or ungrounded…