[O Lord,] I have 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. (From the Introit for the Second Sunday after Trinity)
In the Name + of Jesus. Amen. Let us pray . . . How long, O Lord? How long am I supposed to deal with these enemies who rail against me? How long am I going to have to deal with the evil that destroys all of the relationships I have in my life? How long will the guilt of my sin prick my conscience and trouble my heart? How long will the shame of the sin of others lay heavy upon me, smothering me to the point where I can’t breathe anymore?
Is this going to last forever? You promised that you love me, but is this love? I thought that all of this pain would be taken away. I thought that the bullies at school would find someone new to pick on. I thought that the demons running around my head would be told to be silent. I thought that the feelings and desires that seem to come so naturally to me wouldn’t be so foreign to what you call good. How long, O Lord, must I suffer with all of this?
Consider and answer me, O Lord my God. Grant to my eyes the light of your salvation. Give me comfort and the peace that passes all understanding in the midst of pain. For I know that my death looms over me; each day calling out a little louder. I know that my enemies lurk in the shadows, plotting and scheming against me. I know that the demons whisper into my ears, telling me that I am too far gone and am not yours.
So deal bountifully with me once again, like you did on the Cross those many years ago. In fact, give me that Cross, today, right now, for now is when I need it. Graciously provide for me the Body that was broken there for me. Place it on my tongue. Mercifully share with me the Blood that was poured out there for the sins of the world. Pour it down my throat. Grant to me the faith I need to receive your crucified and empty-tomb victory, that I may sing your praises once again and proclaim unto the world, in the face of my enemies, that Jesus is for me! In the Name + of Jesus. Amen.
Shine in our hearts, O Spirit, precious light; Teach us Jesus Christ to know aright That we may abide in the Lord who bought us, Till to our true home He has brought us. Lord, have mercy! (“To God the Holy Spirit Let Us Pray” LSB 768, st.4)
-Rev. Eli Lietzau is pastor of Wheat Ridge Evangelical Lutheran Church in Wheat Ridge, CO.
Audio Reflections speaker: Rev. Duane Bamsch
Come on an adventure with author Eric Eichinger as he unpacks the saga of Jesus’ Hero Journey. You’ll see how aspects of this journey are seen in popular stories, and how God used Jesus to create the most action-packed one with a real Savior for all. Now available from Concordia Publishing House.