This photo feels like a lament to me. There are trees and fog and a building (yes that’s a building, not some monster) blocking the view of the bright morning sun. It feels very ominous to me and like there’s a long way to go before being able to receive the fullness of the light. The shadow of the building also does feel like it is some kind of monster just waiting for whoever is willing to go past the trees.
Psalm 13 is a rough song to take in. There are the pleas of “How long?” and the worries of what will happen if God is not heard from. “Give light to my eyes or I will sleep the sleep of death.” It feels pretty bleak. And there’s a bit of that feeling for me today on Christmas Eve. I have heard from three of my colleagues that they have Covid-19 and are unable to lead services for their congregations. I have gotten word about others who had close exposures and that is messing up plans. I have people in my congregation who are dealing with Covid themselves. I am feeling for those in my life who are facing the first Christmas without a loved one. I am lamenting the people who lost so much in the tornadoes 13 days ago. I am lamenting for a friend whose son is actively struggling with suicidal ideations. My heart is with another colleague who is in a brutal cancer battle. Its all in there.
The Psalm ends with hope. It ends with a sense of a mantra – yes all this crap is stirring. All this pain and sorrow is there. But…
But I trusted in your steadfast love;
my heart shall rejoice in your salvation.
I will sing to the LORD,
because he has dealt bountifully with me.
Tonight, at the congregation I serve, we will gather and we will be flexible with changes that had to be made because of Covid issues but what won’t change is the proclamation of the light of Christ that has come into this world. A light that sometimes can feel like it is blocked but if you notice in this photo, the light still shines around it.
Take a few moments and listen to PBH’s rendition of Psalm 13 – honestly it feels a lot like this photo.