Psalm 88 may be the darkest of all the lament psalms. While most laments end with a note of praise, Psalm 88 ends with the plaintive statement that “darkness is my only companion” (v 18). The psalmist tells us that he has been sick and near death since he was a child (v 15). He has been abandoned by his friends and relatives (v 18).Read More
Just as we have a vision for our lives – all the places we will go and the things that we will do – so too will we have a vision for our children. When we become parents, some of our visions, as well as our wisdom, we will pass on to our children – to help their lives be even better than our own.Read More alcohol, blind spots, inappropriate behaviour, inappropriate relationships, leadership
The high notes of yesterday are not quite maintained. A recital of injustice, desperate pleas to God and a cry for vengeance are more prominent. Evil and pain are all-pervasive and cannot be ignored; they act as a constant challenge to faith, and anyone who pretends otherwise has not plumbed the depths of human agony or faced the questions that it raises.Read More comfort, evil, pain, return
Judah’s end was drawn out. The first exiles went to Babylon in 605 bc; this chapter depicts the siege which culminated in the fall of the city and the capture of Zedekiah in 587 (v 20). The descriptions are by now familiar: the slow death by starvation (v 9), the inability of mothers to feed their young (v 4), the rich reduced to living skeletons (vv 7,8) ,…Read More atrocities, kingdom, responsibility
This, the shortest poem in the book, has much in common with the lament psalms. It repeats many of the earlier themes. The dire situation is described: invasion, occupation, starvation, rape, servitude, the collapse of social order, the destruction of the worship centre.
Little wonder that joy has been replaced by mourning (v 15).Read More complaint, lament, prayer, restoration, way back to God
Just the other day, when I was driving on the highway, someone abruptly cut in front of me, and I had to brake to avoid an accident. I don’t need to tell you what I felt at that moment. But then I remembered that I had done just the same thing to someone else only a few days previously.Read More double standard, God’s anger, judgment, sin