Pilot Knob Lutheran              Distressed?               8/15/2023

Distress, we all experience it at some point in life and probably more than once. Distress is defined as; “Great pain, anxiety, or sorrow; acute physical or mental suffering.” It appears to be the norm now days with all that is happening in our government, economy, health system and international turmoil.

Psalm 77:1-6 I cry out to God; yes, I shout. Oh, that God would listen to me! When I was in deep trouble, I searched for the Lord. All night long I prayed, with hands lifted toward heaven, but my soul was not comforted. I think of God, and I moan, overwhelmed with longing for his help. You don’t let me sleep. I am too distressed even to pray. I think of the good old days, long since ended, when my nights were filled with joyful songs. I search my soul and ponder the difference now. Asaph, the author cried out to God for courage during a time of deep distress caused by doubt; Vss. 7-9 Has the Lord rejected me forever? Will he never again be kind to me?
Is his unfailing love gone forever? Have his promises permanently failed? Has God forgotten to be gracious? Has he slammed the door on his compassion? Doubt is not a sin when dealt with properly. His period of doubt began to change when he laid out his requests and began shifting his focus from himself to God’s character and remembering what he has done in the past.

It was only when he set aside his doubts about God’s holiness and care for him (Vss 13-14) did his stress subside. Vs. 20 You led your people along that road like a flock of sheep,
with Moses and Aaron as their shepherds.

It is all too easy to become preoccupied with whatever is causing us to stress, worry or fear. This thinking feeds our doubt in God and His mercy and love. As we pray remembering God’s nature and his promises, he shifts our focus from ourselves to him. It is not a matter of denying what creates distress, but telling ourselves the truth about God in our time of distress. He continues to show mercy, love, strength, and grace to overcome.

Pr. Bob Snitzer

By the Way:

August 20, 9:00 AM Morning worship. Sermon: 1 Samuel 2 Consecration vs. Corruption

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