The Church that Feeds People

Pentecost service

Sermons

Out of the Depths

150628_coverPsalm 130

Year B, 5th Sunday after Pentecost

What is your lament?

What has kept you awake at night, or woken you long before you wanted to rise?

What has filled your heart to overflowing with need,
with grief,
with anxiety,
with guilt,
or with anger?

Hold that thought in your mind now. Remember that lament.

St. Paul once said, “In God we live and move and have our being.” This is a radical idea. This is one of the ways Jesus shows us that we know God. God is not “out there” somewhere. We are In God. That changes the way we know God. That changes the way we pray to God. God is closer than we imagine and more immediate than we pretend. That matters to us when we lament and pray to God.

I want to move together through Psalm 130 today, remembering our own lament, and remembering Paul’s words:

In God we live and move and have our being.

The Psalmist cries:

Out of the depths I cry to you, O Lord.
Lord hear my voice!

In God we live and move and have our being. God is love. God is the very ground of our being, but sometimes we need God to be less vast. Sometimes we need God to be small enough, personal enough, to hear when we cry out for help or in despair, or in grief, or in guilt.

Out of the depths I cry to you, O Lord.
Lord hear my voice!
Let your ears be attentive to the voice of my supplication.

Who am I to ask for God’s ear?

If you, O Lord, should mark iniquities, Lord, who could stand?

Certainly not me. I don’t deserve forgiveness. I am not sure I am worth your attention, O God.

But there is forgiveness with you, so that you may be revered.

In God we live and move and have our being. And with God there is forgiveness, so even though I am not worthy, I trust that God will forgive me, and I call out to God from the depths.

In God we live and move and have our being, but sometimes we are in the deep, chaotic, terrifying depths. Fear, worry, anxiety, all keep us awake at night. Grief, loss and loneliness wake us up long before the sun rises.

I can’t sleep, but I don’t want to get up. I know I need to sleep, but my mind is spinning, running over my worries, or my fears, or my anger, or my guilt, and I cannot sleep.

I wait for the Lord, my soul waits,

I need hope. I need forgiveness. I need comfort. I need understanding.

and in God’s word I hope.

My soul waits for the Lord,
more than those who watch for the morning,
more than those who watch for the morning.

In God we live and move and have our being. Even in the depths, even in the dark of night, we know that the morning will eventually come. My soul waits for the morning, and the morning will come. This morning the sunrise was a brilliant orange, beautiful colors filled the sky, promising day and life and goodness.

O people of God, hope in the Lord!
For with the Lord there is steadfast love,
and with the Lord there is great power to redeem.

In God we live and move and have our being. We live and move in steadfast love. Even from the depths, when the night is darkest, and there is no light, even when our grief or fear or loneliness overwhelms us, there is steadfast love.

We can’t know how our lives will turn out, but we can hold onto hope. In God we live and move and have our being.

It is God who will redeem us from all our iniquities.

In God we live and move and have our being. Even when we call out of the depths, we are living and moving and we have our being IN God. And with the Lord there is steadfast love, and with the Lord there is forgiveness, and with the Lord there is the power to redeem.

The Rev. David Marshall
St. Dunstan’s Church, Shoreline WA
June 28, 2015

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