The world is loud;
turn inward to a quiet heart.
The pace of life is hectic;
slow down and be still for a moment.
You have forgotten to breathe;
take a long, slow inhale and feel your body relax with the exhale.
Busyness has stolen your focus;
clear your head and turn to God.
When Paul and Silas had been severely beaten, the authorities threw them into prison and ordered the jailer to secure them with great care. When he received these instructions, he threw them into the innermost cell and secured their feet in stocks.
Around midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening to them.
Acts 16:23-25next >
When life is at its worst, what do you do? Do you allow the darkness to creep up, or do you seek the light of one candle, burning bright against the shadows?
Paul and Silas refused to let the brokenness of the world tarnish their love of God and their joy in being the children of God. They knew that there is nothing in the world that can separate them from God, not imprisonment, not torture, not even death. God is with us in the dark places, too. And that is a reason to sing.
Can you imagine? Try it.
When the pain of grief or anger or loneliness has entered your heart and threatened to take over, imagine turning to God, whose love never fades, whose care never wavers, who will never forsake or abandon you. Now, let that feeling of comfort and love overtake the negative feelings. Let it surround you.
Can you feel it? Like a ray of sunshine warming your face on a cold day? Like a big, bear hug? Like love?
Sarah McCaslinnext >
God, even in the darkest corners, you find me. I cannot be lost from your loving gaze. Thank you for never abandoning me; thank you for seeking me out and sitting with me in my pain. Lead me to your light when I am caught in shadow. Amen.next >
Christ be with me, Christ within me,
Christ behind me, Christ before me,
Christ beside me, Christ to win me,
Christ to comfort and restore me.
Christ beneath me, Christ above me,
Christ in quiet, Christ in danger,
Christ in hearts of all that love me,
Christ in mouth of friend and stranger.
St. Patrick’s Breastplate (390-461 AD)
Sarah McCaslin is a Presbyterian pastor and psychotherapist who lives in Brooklyn, New York with her husband and two awesome kids, Claire and Henry. She is also the minister of Waffle Church (really!), an all-ages worship service of St. Lydia’s Church in Brooklyn.
I Am… - The Open Door
Ken Medema - kenmedema.com