Thursday, October 25, 2007
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Psalm 117:1-2 – Praise the Lord, all nations! Extol him, all peoples! For great is his steadfast love toward us, and the faithfulness of the Lord endures forever. Praise the Lord! (ESV)

Apocryphally, if a woman gets a cold, she calls it a cold. When a man gets a cold it must be — at the very least — the flu! I say nothing.

Sometimes when I get a cold, I am laid low for a few days, totally knocked out. I can predict this event to within a few weeks of when it will be likely to occur. Lately, I have been fitter, and so for over the last year, I had not been poll-axed by a cold.

So it came as a complete surprise, when I had a cold recently, that without warning, it turned nasty, went onto my chest, and laid me low.

When I am under the weather, my expectancy of a good devotional time is supplanted by a certain amount of resentment, having been struck ineffectual. Consequently, reminiscent of Job, I was in a really poor state of mind for my quiet time.

Like the man in the story who, when lost, stops the car, asks a yokel for directions, and is told in reply, "Well if I was you, I would not be starting out from here to get there!" — I was setting out from the wrong place.

God's love had not changed, despite where I was that day. If I were to have a meaningful prayer time, I needed to start out from a place where I looked expectantly for God's love and grace toward me, and not from one of antagonism or tokenism, because of my symptoms, i.e. not "poor old me".

To aid this process I read Psalm 117, which is only two verses, and there was a noticeable paradigm shift within, so I continued on to read Psalm 118 — reading right out aloud.

Once I quietly spoke out the words of the Psalms, my antagonism evaporated. Hallelujah! (For more, we can read Psalm 136 aloud.)

Psalm 118:1-4 – Oh give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; for his steadfast love endures forever!
Let Israel say, "His steadfast love endures forever!"
Let the house of Aaron say, "His steadfast love endures forever."
Let those who fear the Lord say, "His steadfast love endures forever." (ESV)

Prayer: Lord, thank You that, unlike ours, Your love does indeed endure and not fade away. We ask, in the name of Jesus, that we might have a right mentality towards You today, and know Your direction. Amen.

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Rod Marshall <>
Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, England

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