By The Reverend Dr. Katie Snipes Lancaster

Psalms are ancient prayers. The ancient prayers held within the book of Psalms speak to us across the centuries and remind us that no matter the impossibilities of our current situation, our cries to God are held in common with those who go before us. This psalm seems to carry the weight of our current moment: there is weeping in the night, there is mourning, there are cries for help. It is easy to want to only hold onto the hope of this psalm, but we are called to lament, too. Lament the global pandemic and its impact, lament systemic racism and it’s generations of pain, lament the current national crisis that seems to shift and change day to day, hour to hour.

In the first days of the stay at home order in Illinois, our associate youth director Claire Revord began recruiting high school students to read and reflect on the Psalms. From listening to their reflections, you can hear how easily Psalms can speak to our current situation. I love what Grace Astolfi says in her reflection on Psalm 30, “this passage reminds me that no matter what things happen in the world or how close i feel to grief or death or pain or general suffering, I can always think of the fact that I am never alone because God is always with us.”

May this prayer I adapted from Psalm 30 be a prayer of praise, a prayer of comfort, a prayer of hope for you this morning.

Let us pray:

O Lord, you draw me up.
I cried for help and you healed me.
You restored me to life.
So let us sing praises.
Let us give thanks.
Weeping may linger for the night,
but joy comes in the morning.
You turned my mourning into dancing,
you clothed me with joy.
My soul praises you.
I cannot be silent.
O Lord my God,
I give thanks to you forever.