“Every day, you are kind, and at night you give me a song as my prayer to you, the living Lord God”.
Ps 42:8 CEV
It is never easy to maintain a consistent attitude to God when life is a topsy-turvy series of confusing events. Whilst some very cool, calm and collected people manage to earn themselves the reputation of being a “man (or woman) for all seasons” such permanently strong people are few and far between.
The psalmist’s patchy attitude to God reflects a faith that gets challenged again and again by his recurring moods of depression which may be aggravated by occasional feelings of homesickness as well as the jeering of his enemies. “Yet he tries to take hold of the hand that chastens him, which is another trait revealing the psalmist’s deeply moving candour and proving that he is speaking the truth. Praying to God by day and singing his praise at night he clings to the God who he imagines has forsaken him and chastises him” (A. Weiser, The Psalms, p 350). Clinging to God when you feel abandoned and forgotten is a mark of true and genuine faith.
It was the kind of faith that some early Christian apostles had when, challenged at the stake to renounce their faith in Jesus, still held firm, even when the flames of death were licking around their feet. The awareness that at the heart of the Christian faith there is a cross rather than a bed of roses is what enables disciples of Jesus to “sweat it out” even when the prospects look grim and the going is rough. It is just as genuine a faith that persists “through all the changing scenes of life” year after year after year.
PRAYER THOUGHT Lord, help me to be more than just a “fair weather Christian”.