Then we will never turn back from you; give us life, and we will call on your name. Restore us, O Lord God of hosts; let your face shine, that we may be saved.” vss. 18-19Psalm 80: 17-19
As we look over the shoulder of the psalmist, we see the prayer that he put in the mouths of worshipers for a time of crisis. It’s not much different from the kind of prayer that many of us might use regularly in the course of a lifetime. In this instance there’s a plea for restoration, a profound desire that the nation might return to a position of power and stability. It’s the sort of thing that we would like for our country. But more often our prayers are for our families and friends, that they might return to health, that strength might be restored. We really do want that for others, and oftentimes too for ourselves. And generally, we also make a promise that if our prayers are heard and answered, if restoration does take place, then we will never again turn away from the Lord. That promise seems to be a natural part of our human interactions with God. Now it’s fine to make such pledges–provided that they come from the heart and aren’t an attempt at manipulation. Because we are called to respond to God’s gifts with changed lives and willing spirits. And when our intentions match what we actually end up doing, the asked-for restoration will be made complete, and God’s face is radiant.
Thought for the Day: What promises have I made to God?