Daily D – Psalm 31:5
“Into your hand I entrust my spirit; you have redeemed me, Lord, God of truth.“ (CSB)
“I’ve put my life in your hands.
You won’t drop me,
You’ll never let me down.” (MSG)
Where do you belong? This is the question consuming every contemplative soul at one time or another.
A music minister I worked with many years ago called me on New Year’s Eve. We were setting up for a party at church. He said he would not be joining us. He had just received a call that his older son had been killed in a car wreck.
My friend is one of the most organized men I have ever known. He is detailed and precise. He doesn’t do anything without what others might consider an overabundance of preparation. That long night and the next day forced upon my friend so many quick decisions he would prefer to have given days of thought and reflection.
In a quiet moment when only the two of us were together, he confessed, “I don’t know where to bury him. We never lived anyplace for more than a few years when he was growing up.” This led to logical next thoughts. “I don’t know where I want to be buried. Those of us who are ministers who serve congregations in towns we have no other connection to have no real places to call home.”
Belonging is one of those issues everyone who thinks, everyone who wonders, ponders.
David was a man on the run for his life when he wrote these words. He had been anointed king, but the guy who held that office wasn’t ready to give it up just yet. Jesus on the cross said among his famous last words what David said when he recognized he had no place to call his own. Jesus prayed Psalm 22. Then, there at the last, he prayed these words. A song of belonging and exile tripped across his parched vocal chords and past his chapped lips into an expression we all recognize even when we do not know its origin.
A king on the run, the King on the cross — each had the same thought in his moment of extremity. When nothing else was certain, when they had no place to lay their heads, each turned to their Father and ours and said, “Into your hand I entrust my spirit.“
Whatever else belonging may mean, it means knowing we belong to God. Here is a simple prayer when you don’t know what to pray. It can be spoken with a single breath: “I belong to you.”
I will pray about belonging with a different understanding of place, purpose, and relationship.
Our Father, I belong to you. You are my eternal home. Here and now, I am in your hands. Now and forever, this is where I belong. Amen.
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Deuteronomy 6:4-9 “Listen, Israel: The Lord our God, the Lord is one. Love the Lord your God with all your heart, with all your soul, and with all your strength. These words that I am giving you today are to be in your heart. Repeat them to your children. Talk about them when you sit in your house and when you walk along the road, when you lie down and when you get up. Bind them as a sign on your hand and let them be a symbol on your forehead. Write them on the doorposts of your house and on your city gates.“
Deuteronomy 1:2, 3 It is an eleven-day journey from Horeb to Kadesh-barnea by way of Mount Seir. In the fortieth year, in the eleventh month, on the first of the month, Moses told the Israelites everything the Lord had commanded him to say to them.
Psalm 52:8, 9 ”But I am like a flourishing olive tree in the house of God; I trust in God’s faithful love forever and ever. I will praise you forever for what you have done. In the presence of your faithful people, I will put my hope in your name, for it is good.“