It used to seem that when something horrific would happen, like the event of 9-11, there would be talk about it for months. People came together to pray for the loss that occurred that day, for those who risked their lives for others, and those who strived for the understanding why it happened in the first place. But, now it seems like there is something awful and horrific every day! I can’t even keep up anymore with all the horrible things going on in the world! I will admit, I feel afraid.
I wonder if it is really worse today than 1000’s of years ago. Even before Jesus was born, there were wars and rumors of wars; people didn’t get along, and there was worship of idols. It’s just that now with all the media, we are much more aware of the evil and hate in the world. By all means, this doesn’t make our wrong actions right.
In Psalm 80:1-7, the Psalmist is crying out to God – “Restore us, O God; let your face shine, that we may be saved” (vv.3; 7). Could the difference be that we do not cry out to our Lord for salvation? Do we as a society, tend to think that we can save ourselves by means of hatred and evil? For example, how many shootings have we heard about just in the past six months or so? Is this not a means in which, people try to take matters into their own hands instead of letting God handle it? Because I do believe that if we were godly people, we would have the faith and know that God loves justice and will take care of whatever is unjustified.
As we begin our Advent journey in preparing our hearts for the coming of Christ, how might asking God to “Restore us, O God; let your face shine, that we may be saved” change the way we think about our situations in life that we feel hurt and bitter about? What if you changed the words to be more personal:
“Restore me, O God, let your face shine, that I may be saved?”