Originally published Monday, 20 February 2012.
In a Bible study I did when I lived in Grand Rapids, we studied Beth Moore’s Psalms of Ascent and looked at Psalm 126, a poem that I can relate to because it speaks of what I like to call "the in-between times" in life.
In this passage, the people are bemoaning their current situation in light of how God once blessed them so much. They desire those times again and beg God, “Restore our fortunes, LORD.”
When the LORD brought back the captives to Zion, we were like men who dreamed. Our mouths were filled with laughter, our tongues with songs of joy. Then it was said among the nations, "The LORD has done great things for them." The LORD has done great things for us, and we are filled with joy.
Restore our fortunes, O LORD, like streams in the Negev.
Those who sow in tears will reap with songs of joy. He who goes out weeping, carrying seed to sow, will return with songs of joy, carrying sheaves with him.
And yet, the beauty of this psalm is that they hold on to hope. In spite of their current circumstances, they still look to God for hope and help and they hold fast to faith. Look at how they talk about “sow[ing] in tears” and “go[ing] out weeping, carrying seed to sow.”
As we studied this psalm, I saw how these people pressed forward in spite of their current hardships: they continued planting…because they knew that God would come along at some point and bring harvest to their actions.
Ecclesiastes 11:4 says this another way: “If you worry about the weather and don’t plant seeds, you won’t harvest a crop.” We have to set out even when skies are bleak or stars aren’t aligned.
That to me is “a leap of faith.” Even if we don’t see fruit or hope immediately, we don’t give up. We continue on: asking, praying, doing and ultimately trusting in Psalm 27:13-14: “I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.”
I often find myself in moments where I’m wishing I were already at the finish line, able to look back and smile appreciatively at everything in hindsight. Like with the unknown about my job situation or income that we’re currently facing.
And yet, I know that what I do now will enable that: Taking steps of faith (praying confidently and boldly, continuing to tithe rather than the urge to stockpile finances, not giving in to worry or anxiety, etc.) and trusting that with them, God will bring about that harvest—when the time is right.
Carmen writes the blog, Life Blessons, which provides an intimate look into her life as a twentysomething woman as she details her experiences learning how to live out her faith, enjoy the simple things in life and be the woman God created to her to be. Along the way, she shares the blessings and lessons that are a part of this journey, the things she likes to call her "blessons."
Feel free to read more at her blog, Life Blessons.
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Thoughts on Change and Wondering What the Future Holds
Lessons from Reading Through the Prophets