Awakening to a New Day

Some days this friend wakes up
feeling discouraged and sad.
She must force
her feet to the floor and breathe
deeply into the dark shadows.

Yet an opportunity
gives her a start when she
the sun hasn’t risen yet.
Then, she ties her sneakers and zips up.

The venture outside is paying
off and she feels the cool air
on her face
and eyes the flaming orb rising
through the trees in the northeast sky.

Under her breath she sings this
Celtic blessing that arises
from deep in
her heart, sending love to all
across the world who need peace.

“Deep peace of the running wave to you
Deep peace of the flowing air to you
Deep peace of the quiet earth to you
Deep peace of the shining stars to you
Deep peace of the gentle night to you.”

Psalm 139

Lord, you have examined me. You know me.
2 You know when I sit down and when I stand up. Even from far away, you comprehend my plans.
3 You study my traveling and resting. You are thoroughly familiar with all my ways.
4 There isn’t a word on my tongue, Lord,
that you don’t already know completely.
5 You surround me—front and back. You put your hand on me.
6 That kind of knowledge is too much for me; it’s so high above me that I can’t reach it.
7 Where could I go to get away from your spirit? Where could I go to escape your presence?
8 If I went up to heaven, you would be there. If I went down to the grave, [a] you would be there too!
9 If I could fly on the wings of dawn, stopping to rest only on the far side of the ocean—10 even there your hand would guide me; even there your strong hand would hold me tight!
11 If I said, “The darkness will definitely hide me; the light will become night around me,”
12 even then the darkness isn’t too dark for you! Nighttime would shine bright as day, because darkness is the same as light to you!
13 You are the one who created my innermost parts; you knit me together while I was still in my mother’s womb.
14 I give thanks to you that I was marvelously set apart. Your works are wonderful—I know that very well.
15 My bones weren’t hidden from you when I was being put together in a secret place, when I was being woven together in the deep parts of the earth.
16 Your eyes saw my embryo, and on your scroll every day was written that was being formed for me,[b] before any one of them had yet happened.[c]
17 God, your plans are incomprehensible to me! Their total number is countless!
18 If I tried to count them—they outnumber grains of sand! If I came to the very end—I’d still be with you.[d]

You ARE Worthy

What gives you deep peace? Do you have a favorite space to sit and read? A view of a garden where you can watch the squirrels, birds, and bunny rabbits?

There are many scriptures that lead me into that sense of calm and Psalm 139 is certainly one of them.

When I was in a time of life in which I felt unworthy, this Psalm said otherwise. Eventually, the words were written on my heart. That was when the love that I felt for myself could flow out to others.

It can be uncomfortable to sit in the silence when dark thoughts come to mind. Knowing that we are never alone, and that God does not judge us harshly, can help us love ourselves and others.

This week my husband and I celebrated our 47th wedding anniversary. I remember on our 30th anniversary when Doyle Bish told us, “You’re just getting started!” They were one of the sweetest couples and would live to celebrate over 70 years if marriage. It is very rare when both people have such longevity!

Life is a certainly a mystery. Things happen to us, and we respond the best that we can. Taking time each day to rest in the stillness of God and contemplate the truest Love, brings us peace and hope for today.

God’s love and peace be with you,

Rev. Marta Wheeler

To view or download a PDF version of this Devotional, click here: Devotional MW 2022-08-24