Monday, February 8, 2010

Mid-Day Devotion 2/8/10

“When the poor and needy seek water, and there is none, and their tongue faileth for thirst, I the LORD will hear them, I the God of Israel will not forsake them. I will open rivers in high places, and fountains in the midst of the valleys: I will make the wilderness a pool of water, and the dry land springs of water.”
Isaiah 41:17-18

As they wandered through the wilderness, thirsting for water, the Lord would provide it for them that they might not yearn any longer, their throats dry from the desert they found themselves journeying in. (Numbers 20:1-13) As they hungered, He would provide for them manna from Heaven and quail that they might no longer find themselves concerned over starvation or famine. (Exodus 16:1-35)

That is the fundamental nature of God’s transcending, encompassing mercy, for He does not let His people die in captivity with no hope given unto them, whether it is a captivity of the body or the mind, the spirit or the soul. He does not promise His love unto His children only to find that it is not enough to sustain them when the times of challenge are upon them and the troubles of this world are before them. He does not lead them from slavery, only to abandon them amidst their needs, finding that He is no longer with them and His Spirit is absent from their lives.

It is His transcending truth that tells us that, amidst our needs, amidst our longing, as our yearning overtakes our soul, He is there to give unto us all that is needed, that we may not fail or fall from the temporal needs of our corporeal captivities of this world, regardless of what may lay before us. (Luke 12:22-31) After all, the Lord’s hand is never so short that it cannot reach us, nor is His ear struck in such a way that our cries so far off that He cannot hear us. (Isaiah 59:1) It’s there that we know that He is the transcending, encompassing force for the cause of our hope even when all seems to be lost and we are left to wonder for how long we will thirst.

We may not always understand how it is that God works, there are divine mysteries that transcend our knowledge and our wisdom. Our eyes are set upon the temporal and are only open to the Spiritual when God opens them for us to show us that which we need to see. Yet that doesn’t mean that God leaves us on our own or without the help that we need that we might persevere in all of the struggles of this world or to have the strength to overcome the obstacles that are placed before us.

What we learn in the words of the Prophet this day is that God does not fail us or forsake us, nor does He abandon us when we feel weakened by the forces that surround us. Rather all the earth, all of the world is under His command, for He had formed it by His own hand, creating it by His will and desire. There, all are subject to His authority and even where we had not thought it was possible, even where we had never thought it was plausible He moves for our good to protect us and to provide for us in the most significant of ways.

Perhaps we can just dismiss the things that we see and that we hear as nothing more than the world working the way that it should or as being just the nature of things. But, if we are to be truthful with ourselves, we have to see the transcending force of God’s authority moving. Why? Because it is He who has created all things, it is He who has the ultimate power over all things, and even through the natural order He moves to make all things possible for the cause of His children that they might be brought from suffering and sorrow, from hurt and pain, from longing and yearning to dwell in the places that they need to be.

Consider the sparrow. The sparrow is provided for in nature. Its food is offered by the ground and its home is made by that which it can find, it moves by the wind of the air. Yet, if God did not provide for it, then none of these things would be possible for it. We are His children, held in more love, with more regard by the mercy of His hand. How much more than is His love made manifest in our lives, even when it feels as if we are wounded? (Luke 12:6-7) After all, we are given the promise that He shall love us and care for us according to our needs, binding our wounds and healing our broken hearts. (Psalm 147:3)

It is then that we know that there is no captivity, no bondage, no slavery or oppression that can separate us from the love of God as He shows us that He is there, contending with the cause of the poor and the downtrodden, as He shows that He will forever shower His love and His mercy, His grace and His compassion upon them through all of the days of their lives.

Trust in the Lord, in the fountain of living water, and know then that You shall never thirst, for even as the wells of our temporal hope dry up, the life affirming, quenching waters of God’s transcending hope shall flow even in the lost and hidden places that seek so to overtake us as we wander in the Spiritual desert that seeks so to overtake us. Then shall we know that true mercy, that true love guides us through this world’s wilderness to the land of Promise of God’s eternal salvation for our lives.

In the name of the Father and of the Son, and of the Holy Spirit, Amen.


Like a Shepherd caring for His flock lead Your people to the still waters of that river of Your hope Lord, protecting them in the pastures of Your love, by the rod and the staff of Your compassion.

Humbled by Your mercy do we give You praise Lord for the freedom of Laurent Maurice, held captive these long months in Chad. By Your grace He has been set free to once more return to His home, now to recover from the pain that he has suffered. It’s here that we see that Your love transcends the power of this earth to move the hearts and the souls of men to bring them to blessed freedom.

Yet, even with his release there are those still held, those who are still captive, and for them we do pray...

For Issa Salomi do we pray, uplifting Him to Your tender mercies. Taken and held by brutal men of iniquity and unrighteousness he is held in the most meagre of estates by those who hold life cheap. You know who they are and what they are capable of. It is they who have, time and time again, robbed the integrity that you give to human life as they took Peter Moore, and claimed the life of Sergeant Ahmed Quesai al-Tayyie. In these dark days then be beside this man, showing him that Your love shall always be more powerful than their hatred.

Chase away the gloomy clouds that now seek to overtake this man, set to flight the captivity that now seeks to overwhelm him and set him free according to Your great compassion and Your abiding love.

To You do we commend Pierre Kamat, Sergio Cicala, Philomene Kabouree, Albert Vilalta, Alicia Gamez and Roque Pascual held by Al Qaeda, who are now under threat for their lives as these terrorists who have torn them away from their homes and their families threaten to kill them. Show them Your light, let it be a lamp that guides their path in even these grim days of anguish and agony that they shall be given hope in all that they do and all that they face.

Let Your mercy and Your grace come upon them that they shall be set free from the captivity and the bondage, the oppression and the hatred that now seeks to rob them of their lives and give them the strength they need to persevere with endurance all that they struggle against.

Private First Class Bowe Bergdahl is under threat of his life by the Taliban as they hold the gifts that You bestow upon mankind cheap and without any value or worth. Let Your freedom come to the life of this imprisoned soul held captive by the hatred of these men but show them that You will not stand for the injustice and the cruelty that unrighteous men impose upon Your creation, upon Your children. Show then that You will work against them as they work against You, and that none who become Your enemy through their hatred and their darkness shall be left to stand amidst their own unrighteousness.

Finally, for the seven members of Radio Farsi arrested in Iran for Espionage do we pray dear Lord. This brutal regime oppresses and imprisons, it subjugates the people as it claims that it has all authority, all the power over the lives of the people. Let not their unrighteousness stand, let not it rob those who seek nothing more than the freedom You have endowed them with fall by their hand, but show them the love and the mercy that comes through Your transcending grace as, by Your justice, You bring them to the liberty that they struggle so valiantly for.

Let Your mercy shine, let Your light break through, that all shall come to know that a just God contends forever in the lives of His people, protecting the sheep of His flock, the children of His love from all that comes against them.

In the name of Your Son, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with You in the Kingdom, one God, world without end, Amen.

Second Prayer:

We are Your Compassion Lord, and You are the rock of our salvation, the refuge by which we anchor ourselves to through the light and the love of Your mercy.

For all the prisoners and the hostages then do we pray Lord, for all the oppressed and the subjugated do we come before Your throne, humbling ourselves as we seek and implore Your grace in their lives, knowing that You are a God of love who stands beside the poor and the afflicted, the weak and the affirmed as they are robbed by iniquity and injustice. Let not unrighteousness stand for all time, let not the unrighteous believe that they can stand in hidden places far from your ways as if they are not subjected to Your justice.

Move in this world, according to Your love and Your mercy for the cause of Your people. Let Your will be done on Earth as it is in Heaven, expelling evil from the hearts of the wicked who seek to destroy the lives of Your people, causing their fall by their hands. Bring them to justice and let justice be done. Bring them to repentance and let repentance work in their hearts that no longer shall they be guided by hatred and sin, by wickedness and iniquity but that they shall become a force for You, rather than an agent for the old adversary.

For all held in any captivity, whether it is a captivity of the body or the mind, the spirit or the soul, we pray. Let not poverty or intolerance, injustice or disease, sickness or slavery overtake them but by Your love bring them to the transcending blessings of the freedom that You promise, that nothing shall rob them of the peace that comes from Your hand.

For this and all things do we pray trusting Your promises with all humility, knowing You are a just God who shines His mercy upon the lives of His people, never to fail them or forsake them in whatever it is that they face.

In the name of Your Son, our Lord and Savior Jesus Christ, who lives and reigns with You in the Kingdom, one God, world without end, Amen.

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