Do not lose heart
As we were approaching Good Friday, we reflected on Psalm 22. Many are familiar with this text because of its opening words of lament: "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?" Jesus cites these words in Matthew 27, when He cried out, "My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?"
So much in our world today leads us to lament. The motif of lament in Psalm 22 suggests a sense of being abandoned or forgotten by the Lord. But as one writer says, "The psalm does not dwell in this motif; It moves from desperation to hope, from suffering to salvation and from humiliation to vindication."
In Psalm 22:23-24, we read, "You who fear the Lord, praise him! All you descendants of Jacob, honor him! Revere him, all you descendants of Israel! For he has not despised or scorned the suffering of the afflicted one; he has not hidden his face from him, but has listened to his cry for help."
We suffer with those who are suffering, and we cry out on behalf of our world, for we desire for all people to see God's salvation, and we hope to see transformation in our world. Do not lose heart. Consider the full picture! "Do not be afraid. For I know that you are looking for Jesus who was crucified. He's not here. He has risen, just as he said."
As the church participates with Christ in His redemptive mission in the world, let us be reminded that the powers of darkness will not have the final word. God is restoring and redeeming lost humanity, and He invites us to partner with Him. There is hope for today and tomorrow, for Christ has risen!
May the grace and peace of our Lord be with you!
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