Pause

Breathing in, I am free.

Breathing out, I pour out love and grace.

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Listen

I will sing of the Lord’s loyal love forever. I will proclaim your faithfulness with my own mouth from one generation to the next. That’s why I say, “Your loyal love is rightly built—forever! You establish your faithfulness in heaven.” You said, “I made a covenant with my chosen one; I promised my servant David: ‘I will establish your offspring forever; I will build up your throne from one generation to the next.’” Selah

Psalm 89:1-4

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Think

After losing her husband to sudden heart failure, Facebook senior executive Sheryl Sandberg encountered unbearable grief, the kind she suspects may never truly go away. As healing comes slowly, however, Sandberg says it’s only because she is learning to work at finding joy, in part by writing down three moments of joy before bed every evening.

In Psalm 89, the psalmist seems to remind himself of God’s freeing love and power to bring the fullness of life. Could we imagine the psalms as a collection of joyful moments recorded, if only to give a deeper knowing of God’s liberating love and grace? How will we record or mark that joy in our lives?

Pain and grief will always come, but in the end we continually come face to face with a God who frees us from darkness, sin, despair, and even death. Yet, we must work at knowing that love and living in it's freedom. We must cultivate it carefully and deliberately. Slowly, it will transform us and free us to participate in God’s great love for the world.

Blake Tommey

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Pray

Liberating God, fill me with your grace, especially when grief and fear set in. Steady me as I work at discovering and cultivating the joy flowing through my life. Transform me to live in the freedom of your unending love. Amen.

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Go

I see my light come shining
From the west unto the east.
Any day now, any day now,
I shall be released.

from “I Shall Be Released” by Bob Dylan, 1967

Blake Tommey

Blake Tommey is a minister and writer living in Charlottesville, Virginia. Alongside his wife Lesley-Ann, who will begin serving as CBF field personnel in New York City in October, Blake continues to live out a calling to seek wholeness for people, through music, writing and ministry in the church.

How Great Thou Art

Clay Mottley

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