Thursday, June 02, 2016

What Are You Doing Here?

Repeat and or meditate on this verse until your thoughts are centered on God.
People arise to bear false witness,
they ask me things I do not know.
My good they now pay back with evil;
it fills my heart with grief and woe.
When they were sick I dressed in sackcloth;
I fasted with humility;
but all the prayers I offered for them
would keep returning back to me.
 —Psalm 35:11-13
Suggested tune: Rendez à Dieu (98.98 D)

At that place he came to a cave, and spent the night there. Then the word of the Lord came to him, saying, “What are you doing here, Elijah?” He answered, “I have been very zealous for the Lord, the God of hosts; for the Israelites have forsaken your covenant, thrown down your altars, and killed your prophets with the sword. I alone am left, and they are seeking my life, to take it away.”
—1 Kings 19:9-10 
That question, ‘What are you doing here?’ can scarcely be freed from a tone of rebuke; but, like Christ’s to the travelers to Emmaus, and many another interrogation from God, it is also put in order to allow of the loaded heart’s relieving itself by pouring out all its griefs. God’s questions are the assurance of his listening ear and sympathizing heart. This one is like a little key which opens a great sluice. Out gushes a full stream. His forty days’ solitude have done little for him. A true answer would have been, ‘I was afraid of Jezebel.’ He takes credit for zeal, and seems to insinuate that he had been more zealous for God than God had been for himself. Despondency has the knack of picking its facts. It is color-blind, and can only see dark tints.
 —Alexander Maclaren
Neither let me become complacent nor discouraged, O God, but confront and remind me:
Confront me with questions about how I am responding to your call.
And remind me of your saving help in the past, and your love for me and all your people shown in the history of Israel and in the life, death, and resurrection of my Lord, in whose Name I pray...
Allow the above to help guide your own confession, praise, thanksgiving, and/or petition.

Our Father, who art in heaven, hallowed be thy Name. Thy kingdom come, thy will be done on earth as it is in heaven. Give us this day our daily bread; and forgive us our debts as we forgive our debtors; and lead us not into temptation, but deliver us from evil; for thine is the kingdom, and the power, and the glory forever. Amen.
 —Matthew 6:9-13

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