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Handling Guilt and Grief

Today’s reading: Psalm 120:1-131:3

My selection: Psalm 130:1-2

1 Out of the depths I cry to you, O Lord!

2           O Lord, hear my voice!

     Let your ears be attentive

          to the voice of my pleas for mercy!

My reflections: In a memorable performance, Mel Gibson, portraying Lt. Col. Hal Moore in the movie “We Were Soldiers”, quotes this psalm as he says goodbye to his wife and children and leaves for the front-lines of the Viet Nam war in 1965. You do not have to be a combat soldier, though, to feel the pain of despair and weight of guilt that comes to the human soul at some point or another in life.

How do you handle grief and guilt? As always, the psalmist points us to God and does three things :

Acknowledgement. He calls to the Lord acknowledging his state of despair.

Reminder. He reminds himself of the Lord’s forgiveness which is meant not to make us presumptuous of His mercy but actually increase our fear, reverence, and awe of Him.

Commitment. He commits himself to wait on the Lord and hope in the Lord while calling all Israel to do the same.

My challenge: Acknowledgement. Reminder. Commitment. This is the biblical formula for dealing with the despair we so often experience through overwhelming circumstances and the weight of our own sin. Repeat as needed.

May He redeem you from all your iniquities for with the Lord is steadfast love.

Tomorrow’s reading: Psalm 132:1-138:8

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