Praise awaits you, our God, in Zion;
to you our vows will be fulfilled.
You who answer prayer,
to you all people will come.
When we were overwhelmed by sins,
you forgave our transgressions.
Blessed are those you choose
and bring near to live in your courts!
We are filled with the good things of your house,
of your holy temple.
You answer us with awesome and righteous deeds,
God our Savior,
the hope of all the ends of the earth
and of the farthest seas,
who formed the mountains by your power,
having armed yourself with strength,
who stilled the roaring of the seas,
the roaring of their waves,
and the turmoil of the nations.
The whole earth is filled with awe at your wonders;
where morning dawns, where evening fades,
you call forth songs of joy.
You care for the land and water it;
you enrich it abundantly.
The streams of God are filled with water
to provide the people with grain,
for so you have ordained it.
You drench its furrows and level its ridges;
you soften it with showers and bless its crops.
You crown the year with your bounty,
and your carts overflow with abundance.
The grasslands of the wilderness overflow;
the hills are clothed with gladness.
The meadows are covered with flocks
and the valleys are mantled with grain;
they shout for joy and sing.
Wondering and Watching:
As I read this this morning, I was stopped cold, by the word “overwhelmed.” It sprang out at me like the Boogey man from behind a darkened bedroom door.
How often my heart wants to speak that word as I muddle through the growing list of To Do’s that surround me on all sides. How often I wrestle this Overwhelm Monster that wants to take me down into his murky waters. How often I visit his suffocating trenches, only to find myself scraping in desperation to get out to fresh air – hoping for one more deep intake of Living Breath.
And the psalmist writes: When we were overwhelmed in sins, you forgave us our transgressions.
Overwhelmed in sin – sin masked as responsibility and duty and all those Hear Me Roar Have-to’s. Overwhelmed in sin – by the worry and doubt and the fear that Life’s To Do’s are bigger than Him… Him! God! The Almighty One who saves!
The God who saves me from me. Who rescues me from the muck of what doesn’t matter. Who forgives me for my anxious worry and chooses me, chooses you, chooses anyone willing to simply draw near.
You answer us.
You are God, and you save us.
You are Hope who forms with power
Who stills the seas of our turmoil
Who calls to Joy, and says “Come, sing your songs for us.”
You enrich to provide.
You drench to soften.
You crown to overflow.
The whole earth is touched by Your great love and groans for Your return; And Nature shouts and sings of Your goodness.
Overwhelmed and turned to overflowing.
Lord, you have turned my Overwhelmed to Overflowing… and I stand humbled again by the great hug of love too good to be true. But it is, and You are. And I. will. shout … for Joy.