Psalm 119: 105-112
105 Your word is a lamp to my feet and a light to my path.
106 I have sworn an oath and confirmed it, to observe your righteous ordinances.
107 I am severely afflicted; give me life, O Lord, according to your word.
108 Accept my offerings of praise, O Lord, and teach me your ordinances.
109 I hold my life in my hand continually, but I do not forget your law.
110 The wicked have laid a snare for me, but I do not stray from your precepts.
111 Your decrees are my heritage forever; they are the joy of my heart.
112 I incline my heart to perform your statutes forever, to the end.
This can be a tough old world, filled with unexpected pitfalls and pot-holes that threaten to throw us off course…
On my daily commute to work, I take many back-roads to get to the main highway that leads in to my office. With all the snow and ice, and frigid temperatures that we’ve been having here in Eastern Pennsylvania these past few weeks, huge pot-holes have opened up on many of these roads. There are even sections of the highway that are littered with these holes…making the ride to work jarring at best, and dangerous at its worst, as a big pot-hole can puncture a tire, or be filled with ice that can cause a spin-out! I often find myself slaloming like an Olympic skier as I travel to and from work; however, this does not always save me as not every pot-hole can be avoided, and every now and then I hit one that shakes my old car, and causes it rattle and almost lose control.
While not all pot-holes can be avoided, we can do what we can to ensure that our car is in good repair so that it can handle the shock of hitting one of these holes without sustaining any real damage; so we make sure that the tires are inflated, the oil changed, and that the car is well maintained.
Life can be like this too: filled with pot-holes that we do our best to avoid, but which we sometimes cannot avoid and hit head-on, and when we do we can find ourselves clutching the wheel to make sure we do not go off-course and wind up in a ditch! We might even find ourselves saying a little prayer at times whit it can feel like we are about to lose control!
It is bad enough when we run into pot-holes in our own lives, but it can be tougher for us when our kids hit them as well, especially when it seems as if they are aiming for them!!! When it’s our children we can feel every bone rattling bump with them as they hit pot-hole after pot-hole; we want to help them to steer clear, but just we cannot avoid every pot-hole, it is impossible for us to stop our children from hitting every pit-fall, temptation or trap that life can throw at them. This can leave us feeling very frustrated or even hopeless at times!
However there is always hope!
Just as keeping our car in good repair can help us when we hit a pot-hole on the road, keeping our spiritual life in good shape can help us as we hit pot-holes in life, and can also help us to support our children when they too find themselves on a rough road! As it says in today’s Psalm, if we can stay true to our faith, and trust in God’s love and direction in our lives, we can get through any pit-fall, and survive even the deepest of pot-holes…because it is God who is traveling through life with us and with our children!
By keeping a healthy life of praise and prayer, and maintaining a connection with other people who are believers, and those who care about us, our faith remains bright. When we then share our faith with others, such as our children or other parents who are trying to manage their own pot-holes, our faith can only grow stronger, giving us unforeseen resources for surviving our own journey through life as a single parent!
The good news, the reason for real hope is knowing that when we live our faith out loud we are also walking in the footsteps of Christ, who calls upon us to be the light of the world, to share his healing word of hope and of God’s love with all who need to hear it! Where this word is shared with others, pot-holes can not only be survived, but also filled-in, for us, for our children and all those in need!!
Let us Pray
God, please continue to walk with us as we navigate the pot-holes of our life, and help us to guide them as they journey down their own rough roads in life. Thank you that you are always with us, and give us hope and love. Please help us to maintain a healthy spiritual connection with you, with our children and with each other, and to have faith that we are walking in the light of the Risen Christ, and in that light pot-holes can not only be survived, but filled-in!