Morning Thanks

Garrison Keillor once said we'd all be better off if we all started the day by giving thanks for just one thing. I'll try.

Sunday, February 24, 2013

Sunday Morning Meds--the whole bloomin' story

“The Lord is my Shepherd”

I have a cold.  It started at least a week ago, crept up from the back of a scratchy throat to annoy whatever glands back there get annoyed by cold germs, eventually leadened my head, scratched at my eyes, made my nose run, and gave my breath a raspy edge.  What I cough up isn’t pleasant.
Five years ago I had back surgery.  I’m not sure how it happened, but a slice of vertebrae actually broke off and ended up in something like a nerve shaft—at least that’s what I was told.  I spent an entire day wrenched in pain, trying to find a position that offered relief.  There was none.  Hence, the scalpel.  My back is better today, although I don’t need a calendar to know the seasons change. 

My wife’s mother is not well.  She has spent most of her as a victim of diabetes, and that disease is taking its toll.  She can’t see well and her balance is not to be trusted.  A few weeks ago she fell, hit her head hard enough to start to bleed.

I dreamed, just last night, that some friends of our lost a son in Iraq.  What I remember is his mother bawling uncontrollably, something I’d never seen her do.  Their son is not in the military.  Where do bad dreams come from?

We worry almost incessantly—my wife and I do–about our children.  They are both adults and they both live here, and sometimes I wish they didn’t so I didn’t have to know every time they have a mishap or our precious little grandchildren have a cold or scrape a knee.  I wish I didn’t have to register their vicissitudes as if they were my own.  I love them dearly, but before I became the parent of adult children, I could never have guessed how much time such parents can consume worrying about them.

My sister had breast cancer a few years ago.  Last year—just about this time—my father died.

A friend of mine once said she wished that FCC would force television networks to air a specific message maybe six or seven times a day:  “YOU TOO WILL DIE.”  It’s altogether too easy, she says, for people to think that life is a Disney world.

“The Lord is my shepherd” is one of those biblical phrases that resonate through the ages, like “For God so loved the world” or “In the beginning God created heaven and earth.”  Basically, they all say the same thing—he cares. That’s the simple blessed truth.

“The Lord is my shepherd.”  When people can repeat those words from the heart, they’ve got the whole truth of Holy Scripture. 

Life is no bowl of cherries or box of chocolates.  We’re all walking down a path that leads in the same direction—to a hole in the ground.

But the Lord is my shepherd.  I shall not want.  That’s the whole bloomin' story and nothing but, the simple lesson of this great psalm, and the theme of every song of the holy scripture.  It’s that easy and it’s that good. 
Don’t trust me either—I’ve got a cold.  Trust him, the shepherd.
Maybe a half dozen years ago and over a span of several years, I wrote psalm meditations, 365 of them, in fact, choosing the psalms on the basis of their invocation of outdoor themes.  Quite consistently, it seems, these meds garner this blog's broadest reading audience, but they certainly aren't current.  The news stories this meditation contains, for instance, are quite dated--I don't have the sniffles, my mother-in-law has been gone for a few years now, and although we still worry about our kids, a half-dozen years ago now our concerns were greatly different.  Two books came out of this long collection, Sixty and Sixty, and Honest to God.  Each of them included 60 meds--that means 240 or so stay, unread in my computer.  

Each Sunday I draw from that collection--we just finished Psalm 19; today, officially, we begin 23.


Anonymous said...

Proverb 3:

5 Trust in the Lord with all your heart
and lean not on your own understanding;
6 in all your ways submit to him,
and he will make your paths straight.[direct your paths]


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