Reflections for the Day — Sept. 23rd, 2015

Psalm 118 New International Version (NIV)

Psalm 118

Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;
    his love endures forever.

Let Israel say:
    “His love endures forever.”
Let the house of Aaron say:
    “His love endures forever.”
Let those who fear the Lord say:
    “His love endures forever.”

When hard pressed, I cried to the Lord;
    he brought me into a spacious place.
The Lord is with me; I will not be afraid.
    What can mere mortals do to me?
The Lord is with me; he is my helper.
    I look in triumph on my enemies.

It is better to take refuge in the Lord
    than to trust in humans.
It is better to take refuge in the Lord
    than to trust in princes.
10 All the nations surrounded me,
    but in the name of the Lord I cut them down.
11 They surrounded me on every side,
    but in the name of the Lord I cut them down.
12 They swarmed around me like bees,
    but they were consumed as quickly as burning thorns;
    in the name of the Lord I cut them down.
13 I was pushed back and about to fall,
    but the Lord helped me.
14 The Lord is my strength and my defense;
    he has become my salvation.

15 Shouts of joy and victory
    resound in the tents of the righteous:
“The Lord’s right hand has done mighty things!
16     The Lord’s right hand is lifted high;
    the Lord’s right hand has done mighty things!”
17 I will not die but live,
    and will proclaim what the Lord has done.
18 The Lord has chastened me severely,
    but he has not given me over to death.
19 Open for me the gates of the righteous;
    I will enter and give thanks to the Lord.
20 This is the gate of the Lord
    through which the righteous may enter.
21 I will give you thanks, for you answered me;
    you have become my salvation.

22 The stone the builders rejected
    has become the cornerstone;
23 the Lord has done this,
    and it is marvelous in our eyes.
24 The Lord has done it this very day;
    let us rejoice today and be glad.

25 Lord, save us!
    Lord, grant us success!

26 Blessed is he who comes in the name of the Lord.
    From the house of the Lord we bless you.
27 The Lord is God,
    and he has made his light shine on us.
With boughs in hand, join in the festal procession
    up[c] to the horns of the altar.

28 You are my God, and I will praise you;
    you are my God, and I will exalt you.

29 Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good;
    his love endures forever.

Reflections for the Day:

I have been reading the Psalms lately– focusing on Psalm 118.  I have also been drawn to the Proverbs, looking at every day wisdom and common sense standards of behavior and conduct and common courtesy– things that seem lacking these days, from where I’m sitting.

I have been thinking on how God seeks justice and fairness.  I look to how he applies his love to all his creations.  I think about how Jesus was the ultimate instrument of God’s love and kindness and how he strived to address social inequalities and injustices.  I find comfort in knowing that Jesus expressed that he was the fulfillment of the Mosaic Law (Deuteronomy and Leviticus and Exodus) and that the covenant he established sets for us a new Law– one determined and held together by love– love for God and love for each other and even love for our enemies.  If life was defined by love, there would be no room for hatred.

In Psalm 118, I find many messages particularly for today’s LGBT community– especially LGBT kids and teens!  Have faith that God loves you and will protect you.  Keep verses 22-23 in mind too!  No one is “less than” in God’s kingdom.  All are precious in God’s sight and Jesus has made this all possible through his sacrifice on the cross.  Jesus made it clear that all are welcome at the table of communion and all are worthy of forgiveness, dignity, respect, salvation, and the gifts of God.  Don’t let people try and convince you otherwise just because they have cherry picked a verse here and there from Deuteronomy or Leviticus… Jesus made it quite clear in the Gospels of Mathew, Mark, Luke, and John that love is the second covenant, rendering the first obsolete as he fulfills the Law with love for God and others.

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About Rachel Conlin McLeod

Transgender activist, Christian at First Baptist Church in Willimantic, Connecticut. B.A. in History and Social Sciences, B.A. in Sociology Freelance writer, tutor, research assistant Loves hockey, ballet, women's gymnastics, and Bible studies.
This entry was posted in Love, Proverbs, Psalms. Bookmark the permalink.

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