Thursday, June 30, 2022

How Happy We Would Be

 Written ~2002 when my family went to a baseball game and chronic illness kept me home with my dog


Once there was a little Johnny Jump-up with a gold and violet face. All day long he hung his head and sighed, “Oh me, oh my. Oh my, oh me. If only I were tall and elegant like the rose, how happy I would be!”

On a trellis nearby grew a tall, slender climbing rose with petals like the flush of a baby’s cheek. All day long she hung her head and sighed, “Oh me, oh my. Oh my, oh me. If only I were strong and useful like the apple tree, how happy I would be.”

Overhead arched the strong limbs of the apple tree, laden with sweet red fruit. All day long he drooped his branches and sighed, “Oh me, oh my. Oh my, oh me. If only I had a cozy nest and a family to love like the robin, how happy I would be.”

In its branches lived a little robin redbreast, hovering over her nest of speckled blue eggs. All day long she hung her head and sighed, “Oh me, oh my. Oh my, oh me. If only I were free to soar into the sky like the eagle, how happy I would be.”

Aloft soared the eagle, alone and splendid. All day long he hung his head and sighed, “Oh me, oh my. Oh my, oh me. If only I could fly into heaven itself like the angels, how happy I would be.”

In the heavens themselves, the angels went about serving God and His children among men. One sad angel hung his head and sighed, “Oh me, oh my. Oh my, oh me. If only I could reign like God, with all things serving me, how happy I would be!”

“O foolish, rebel creature!” said God. “There is no God but Me. Away with you into the outer darkness!”

“As for you, silly eagle, “said the Lord, “If you flew into heaven, who would show the new strength I promise and the heights to which I call My people?”

“As for you, little robin,” said the Lord, “If you soared like the eagle, who would show forth My tender care and provision for the smallest of My creatures?”

“As for you, mighty tree,” said the Lord, “If you nested and nurtured like the robin, who would bring forth sweet fruit for the strength and joy of My people?”

“As for you, precious rose,” said the Lord, “If you grew tall and thick like the apple tree, who would show the world both the beauty and the pain of life in this sinful world?”

“As for you, tiny flower,” said the Lord, “If you were tall and elegant like the rose, who would make men smile and forget their worries in the beauty I lavish on the very ground they tread?”

“O foolish creatures! If you would only stop fretting over what you are not and enter into My joy in making you as you are, how happy you would be!”

Sunday, June 26, 2022

Wells and Wellsprings

"Satisfy us in the morning with your faithful love so that we may shout with joy and be glad all our days. Make us rejoice for as many days as you have humbled us, for as many years as we have seen adversity."

Psalms 90:14-15 CSB


"Joy being of God was a living thing, a fountain not a cistern, one of those divine things that are possessed only as they overflow and flow away, and not easily come by because it must break into human life through the hard crust of sin and contingency. Joy came now here, now there, was held and escaped" (Elizabeth Goudge, The Dean's Watch).

The Thirst


Are you happy? Are you walking in joy today? Given the times in which we live, that sounds ludicrous, doesn't it? How can one be happy with the world falling to pieces about our heads?


Yet we want to be happy, don't we? We want to walk in joy, but we grieve not only the griefs that trouble us, but the lack of happiness they cause. We bemoan another "case of the Mondays," a fight with a spouse, chronic pain, unemployment or miserable employment, cancer, prodigal children, church strife, political strife, injustice, war, rumors of war, this pandemic that seems it will never end. These are real trials, real suffering. They are near-constant reminders that this world is not as it should be. They remind us that we are fallen people in a groaning creation. We are broken and longing for healing. We sojourn through the wilderness of this life—and it is a wilderness—thirsty. Perhaps we look back to the leeks and onions and watermelons of Egypt. Perhaps we miss the miracle manna of the present moment in our all-consuming longing for the Promised Land of some future day.


C. S. Lewis called that longing, that thirst, sehnsucht. There are times when it is sweet in its bitterness, in the highlights of our life, in flashes of joy when gazing at a butterfly or mountain vista, in the rhythms of waves crashing on the beach in early morning when all else is quiet. There are other times when the bitterness of the longing is so great that, though we thirst, our circumstances taste like the waters of Marah, impossible to swallow apart from the cross of Christ making them sweet. In the fleeting happy moments and the hardest, still we thirst.


The Cisterns


How will we respond to this thirst? Where will we turn for happiness and satisfaction?


Often we look for joy in worldly goods: in a mate, a job, a family, a ministry. We search for joy in good health, friendships, financial stability, nice home, adventure, travel, good food, more food, the latest gadget, letters after our name. We look to acquisitions, appetites, and accomplishments. We look to the earthly to give us joy and satisfy the thirst of our hearts. Then we feel surprised and frustrated when the earthly doesn't satisfy. We might as well have been drinking sea water. We have been looking for contentment in C. S. Lewis's "mud pies in a slum" because we do not understand the offer of a holiday by the sea ("Weight of Glory," Weight of Glory, 25ff.).


What will we do then? How will we respond? Many times we assume we chose wrong. We change our job, our address, our mate, our church. We take a trip, eat a meal, dye our hair, buy a new dress, sign up for a class. And we feel surprised and frustrated again that our hearts aren't satisfied. Still we thirst. We flee from the wilderness of obedience to a green pasture in the distance and find it also to be a wilderness. Or a mirage. We feel miserable and may have compounded our sorrow by the means we took to escape it.


May I suggest that our frustrated thirst is a blessing? Even when life seems going well and our circumstances are in a season of happiness, still those are only wells. Cisterns, even. And leaky cisterns at that. They give water for a while and then dry out, or maybe someone blocks them, as in Old Testament times. As the Lord told the prophet Jeremiah,

"For my people have committed a double evil:
They have abandoned me,
the fountain of living water,
and dug cisterns for themselves—
cracked cisterns that cannot hold water" (Jeremiah 2:13, CSB).

If our self-rescue attempts never failed us, we might never be open and ready to redirect our search to the Fountain, the living wellspring of joy, the Lord Jesus Christ. This is why Nancy DeMossWolgemuth says anything that makes us need God is a blessing. This is why persecuted Puritan pastor Samuel Rutherford wrote, "Dry wells send us to the fountain" (Samuel Rutherford, The Loveliness of Christ,  Kindle location 517).


The Fountain


What is this fountain? Where is the wellspring of happiness? Of joy?


It is not a "what," but a "who." Christ Jesus alone can satisfy. He alone can quench our hearts' thirst. He alone can give joy that never fails, even in the midst of overwhelming sorrow, as He Himself said: "How happy are those who know what sorrow means for they will be given courage and comfort!" (Matthew 5:4, J. B. Phillips New Testament). He alone can give the joy in promises not yet realized, that joy in the sure and certain hope of future grace that sustains us in the thorns and thistles of the here and now. The expectation of His coming, the day when all wrongs will be made right and everything sad will come untrue, fills us with anticipatory joy even now. This is the mysterious beatitude, the sacred happiness, of the meek, the mourners, the peacemakers, the persecuted. This is the happiness which finds those who are not offended by the inscrutable ways of God. This is the joy of Habakkuk the prophet. When contemplating the imminent Babylonian invasion and relocation of Hebrew hostages to Babylon Habakkuk writes,

Though the fig tree does not bud
and there is no fruit on the vines,
though the olive crop fails
and the fields produce no food,
though the flocks disappear from the pen
and there are no herds in the stalls,
yet I will celebrate in the Lord;
I will rejoice in the God of my salvation!

The Lord my Lord is my strength;
he makes my feet like those of a deer
and enables me to walk on mountain heights!

For the choir director: on stringed instruments.

Habakkuk 3:17-19, CSB, emphasis mine


Dear heart, happiness is never truly found by those who make it their quest. Happiness is the byproduct of pursuing Christ who pursues us first and faithfully. Seek happiness, and you will not find it. Seek Jesus and holiness, and you will find them and happiness too. He brings water from a rock and makes streams flow in desert wastes, when He is the one who has led us into the desert wilderness. Our thirst and the world's frustration of it drive us to Jesus, the fountain of living water who never runs dry. Jesus never turns a thirsty soul away empty when that soul brings its thirst to Him (John 4; John 7:37-39). On the other hand,

"Focusing on one's soul—on oneself—means you lose yourself. It reminds me of the hedonic paradox: if you focus on gaining your happiness, it will constantly elude you. Only by not focusing on your own happiness can you experience the true depths of actual happiness. Similarly, the soul is lost and saved not by denying one's particularity but by laying oneself before the living God, letting his will be more important than my will, thus submitting myself to his purposes and plans. To our surprise, when this happens, we discover true life" (Kelly Kapic, You're Only Human, Kindle location 1575).


True happiness is the sweetness of the life of Christ the True Vine flowing into us, the branches. Even our wounds are points of contact with His vitality and joy, and that joy can withstand and coexist with profound sorrow and loss. Elisabeth Elliot has quoted Janet Erskine Stuart's words, "The one pure joy of the one who suffers is the presence of Christ." Not only is Jesus undeterred by our thirst; He is also undeterred by our suffering. People often are; even His own people turn away from our grief and pain, but He never does. He comes to the brokenhearted closer than the dearest dear one, closer than our breath and the blood in our veins, and He bandages those wounds with His pierced hands. Where Jesus is, joy is. This joy of living in union and communion with Him is a foretaste of the consummation of all things, when Isaiah's prophecy will be realized in full:

"The wilderness and the dry land will be glad; the desert will rejoice and blossom like a wildflower. It will blossom abundantly and will also rejoice with joy and singing. The glory of Lebanon will be given to it, the splendor of Carmel and Sharon. They will see the glory of the Lord, the splendor of our God. Then the lame will leap like a deer, and the tongue of the mute will sing for joy, for water will gush in the wilderness, and streams in the desert; the parched ground will become a pool, and the thirsty land, springs" (Isaiah 35:1-2, 6-7a CSB).


The Digging


For Moses and the people of Israel, one time water came from the rock struck with the staff of God in Moses' hand. Once it was meant to come by Moses' words. Other times the patriarchs had to dig to find the springs (Genesis 26:19). So it is with joy: sometimes it bubbles up through the indwelling Spirit without our thought or effort because Christ was stricken for our joy; sometimes we must cry out for it with groaning; sometimes we need to dig down to it through the habits of holiness, especially the Word of God, prayer, and fellowship with our brothers and sisters in Christ. (Singing praise to Him also helps.)

The nineteenth-century English minister and orphanage head George Müller discovered this for his own life, and his words have helped multitudes of others:

            "…the first great and primary business to which I ought to attend every day was, to have my soul happy in the Lord. The first thing to be concerned about was not, how much I might serve the Lord, how I might glorify the Lord; but how I might get my soul into a happy state, and how my inner man might be nourished. For I might seek to set the truth before the unconverted, I might seek to benefit believers, I might seek to relieve the distressed, I might in other ways seek to behave myself as it becomes a child of God in this world; and yet, not being happy in the Lord, and not being nourished and strengthened in my inner man day by day, all this might not be attended to in a right spirit" (George Müller, "Soul Nourishment First").

When we steep our dry and thirsty souls in meditation on the written Word of God and pray it back to Him, when we partake of Scripture as a sacrament of the presence of Christ, the living Word of God, the well of holy joy will spring up and our work will be overflow of His life in us, spreading life to our brothers and sisters in the body of Christ, with their joy splashing onto us as well. This is not, however, Bible reading to check off a list or prepare for a talk we're giving. This is meeting with the Triune God who loves us in the pages of His Word. This is going to the Bible as a thirsty soul finding water in a barren land. David, who kept his sheep and later ran from Saul in the wilderness of Judah, experienced this firsthand and wrote of it in the Psalms.

How precious is your steadfast love, O God!
    The children of mankind take refuge in the shadow of your wings.
They feast on the abundance of your house,
    and you give them drink from the river of your delights.
For with you is the fountain of life;
    in your light do we see light.

Psalm 36:7-9, ESV

You make known to me the path of life;
    in your presence there is fullness of joy;
    at your right hand are pleasures forevermore.

Psalm 16:11, ESV

Finally, this joy is also a holy joy. The digging of meeting God in Scripture and prayer, if we have really met with God at all, will transform our lives from the inside out. We who have been saved from the penalty of sin are being saved, little by little, from the power of sin, until one day we will be saved even from the presence of sin. The old hymn is right: "Trust and obey, for there's no other way to be happy in Jesus but to trust and obey" ("Trust and Obey," John Henry Sammis).


Lord, this sounds so simple, but it's hard. We are thirsty and hurting, and we desperately long for Your joy. Forgive us for trying to quench our thirst from the leaky buckets of this world. Forgive us for forsaking You and looking for joy in the things of earth. Those dry wells have driven us to You, who give water without cost to all who come, You the only true slaking of our thirst (Isaiah 55:1ff.). We fall on our faces before You and confess that we don't deserve the fountain of living water You promise. Yet You do promise it, Father. You promise fullness of joy and that we might drink from the river of Your delights. In Your great grace, Your undeserved favor, grant us Your joy as a testimony to others of how wonderfully satisfying and beautiful You are. Teach us to learn to be happy in Jesus. Make Your Word vibrantly alive with Your presence. Let us recognize our Shepherd's voice in the Scriptures. Enable our obedience out of the overflow of His life in us. Even in the deepest sorrows, anoint us with the joy of Christ's presence. Make our faces radiant with the nuptial joy of the Bridegroom's love. Silence the shaming voices; the resistance of Satan who wants to keep us joyless and in bondage to our broken cisterns; the worry that keeps us focused on the sand instead of our Savior. In Your presence is fullness of joy. Hold us there, Lord. Hold us fast under Your wings, because of Jesus' redeeming work. Amen.





This is not the opposite of joy, but it can be the path to the "Joy that seekest us through pain" ("O Love That Wilt Not Let Me Go" by George Matheson).

Tuesday, June 21, 2022

Good in All Tenses

"Listen to me, house of Jacob, all the remnant of the house of Israel, who have been sustained from the womb, carried along since birth. I will be the same until your old age, and I will bear you up when you turn gray. I have made you, and I will carry you; I will bear and rescue you."
Isaiah 46:3‭-‬4 CSB

"Our faith is built on a rock that can never be moved. Nothing in the past has shaken the foundation of our faith. Nothing in the present can move it. Nothing in the future will undermine it. Whatever may occur in the ages to come, there will always be good reason for believing in Jehovah and his faithful Word.

"The great truths he has revealed will never be disproved.
The great promises he has made will never be retracted.
The great purposes he has devised will never be abandoned.

"So long as we live, we will always have a refuge, a hope, a confidence, that can never be removed....

"The Lord is good to us in all tenses and in all ways.... Our experimental dealings with God make us know that he is our gracious helper from the first to the last" (Charles Spurgeon).

Eternal, unchanging Father,
The I AM from forever past to forever future; 
Prince of Peace, 
The Alpha and Omega, 
The same yesterday and today and forever;
Holy Spirit, 
Who hovered over the face of the deep in the beginning, 
You who dwell in me now to sanctify and encourage me, 
You who with the Bride say, "Come":

You marked me as Yours, O Triune God, 
From before the foundation of the world, 
Before I even existed.
Before I knew You,
You knew me;
Chose me; 
Loved me. 
In the fulness of time You brought me to Yourself, 
Gave me new birth, new eyes, new heart. 
You have been with me
And provided for all my needs, 
Protected me from dangers seen and unseen.

Yet when I gaze down the road of unknown years
Remaining in my life, 
Sometimes I worry
What will become of me 
When I am older and greyer and weaker than I am

Thank You for this promise, Lord.
You have written those remaining days; 
You know their number and their content; 
You write good stories for Your children.
You are good to us, to me,
In all tenses
And in all ways.

I believe; 
Help my unbelief.
Your grace has brought me safe this far. 
Your grace will lead me home, 
For Jesus' sake. 

Saturday, June 18, 2022

My #GirlDad

 Long before Kobe Bryant and the #GirlDad hashtag, long before hashtags in fact, my dad was already a girldad extraordinaire to my sisters and me.

Among my earliest memories is our weekly tradition of Sunday comics. Every Sunday morning, likely so Mom could get ready for church in peace, Dad would gather us girls up in the living room and read the funny papers to us. From that early age I knew he liked spending time with us and didn't think we were a burden. Sometimes he would stop at the Southern Maid donut shop near White Rock Lake on the way to church too. I remember that's where we stopped because the line drawing of the pretty Southern belle on the box fascinated me.

Once a year, during summer break, I would dress up in my Sunday best and he would take me to work with him. "Take Your Daughter to Work Day" didn't exist yet, but we did it anyway. He would take me out to a special lunch at a grown-up place, just the two of us. In my teens, he would take me to work with him more often. He owned his own business then, so he gave me actual work for an actual paycheck that actually helped him. I guess that was my first opportunity to be his sidekick.

He sat through countless ballet, piano, and voice recitals, synchronized swim presentations, and orchestra and choir concerts. He wasn't exposed to the performing arts as a child, but he embraced them for our sake. He coached one sister's softball and soccer teams. He helped Mom with taxi duty, driving us to ballet and piano and voice and various competitions. Those conversations and unstructured times together are among my life's treasures. When he traveled for work, he would make a funny tableau with our Cabbage Patch Kids before he left as a surprise to make us laugh, and we would do the same right before we went to pick him up at the airport on his return. (Those dolls had secret lives when our backs were turned, and they were pretty mischievous.) He always brought us some small gift back from his travels so we'd know he'd been thinking of us.

Dad and me,  April 2022

He has stood by me in all the plot twists of my life. He has been a good friend to my husband and loved him as a son. We have shared a lot of laughter and a lot of tears. Any time with him is special, because he makes it so.

In recent years, we teamed up again when I was his sidekick for two summers of VBS. That was more fun than anyone ought to have in church! Currently, I have the privilege to serve as his sidekick in caring for my mom, and I'm so very grateful for God-given strength to love Jesus by loving them during this season.

And oh, does he care for her!

I've heard it said that the greatest gift a man can give his children is to love their mother well. If that is true, we girls are of all daughters most blessed. I have never before witnessed such sacrificial love of a husband for his wife. My dad has accomplished many things in his life, including running a business, sharing the gospel at home and abroad, and serving as deacon chair of our church during the most traumatic season of its history. In my (biased) opinion, his greatest legacy of all is the largely unseen living icon of Christ he is writing in the love he pours out on my mother day by day. It is one of the greatest blessings of my life to witness these closing years of their marriage as we walk the slow grief of dementia and he finds himself remembering for two.

Daddy, thank you. Thank you for loving me and loving Mom. Most of all, thank you for loving the Lord and taking the spiritual lead in our extended family. I know your retirement years haven't looked like you expected, but you have accepted your own plot twists with grace. May the Lord bear you up all the days of your life and give you strength for every challenge He gives you. I am confident our heavenly Father will hold you fast, as your favorite verses say.

My sheep hear my voice, and I know them, and they follow me. I give them eternal life, and they will never perish, and no one will snatch them out of my hand. My Father, who has given them to me, is greater than all, and no one is able to snatch them out of the Father’s hand (John 10:27-29, ESV).

Daddy, I love you forever and always. xxoo ooxx



P.S. Sorry not sorry for embarrassing you like this. "Flowers for the living" and all that.

Monday, June 13, 2022

Variegated Courage

"Do not fear, for I am with you; do not be afraid, for I am your God. I will strengthen you; I will help you; I will hold on to you with my righteous right hand."
Isaiah 41:10 CSB

Courage takes many forms, doesn't it? In certain historical moments, it may mean going into battle to defend your nation. It may mean taking up arms or raising funds or joining a march to aid a beleaguered people across the sea. It may mean running into a burning building or running towards the sound of shots fired in order to protect and serve your community. It can mean, and recently has, risking your life and persevering through exhaustion and burnout to provide medical care to strangers in a pandemic, even though that means no contact with your own family for weeks on end and breaks your heart many times over. 

But courage can also mean getting out of bed this morning and putting one for in front of another in obedience in the face of gale-force trials and seemingly endless heavenly warfare. It can mean leaning hard into the courage and strength of God to enlarge your natural capacity to love and serve as He calls; trusting His manna to be enough for today; giving Him your granola bars and sardines to bless, break, multiply, and give away. It can mean being vulnerable about your pain and risking rejection, or saying, "I can't do this. Will You help me?"

Courage can mean loving your enemies and praying for those who persecute you. It can mean praying for years, for decades, until your last breath, for a prodigal's return from the far country. It can mean speaking uncomfortable truths and working for justice.  It can mean forgiving those who wound you because Christ has forgiven you, and forgiving them whether they ever apologize or repent or not. It can mean dying to your own desires and preferences to love your spouse sacrificially and minister to their weakness.

Courage can mean surrendering a dream to the Lord, knowing that He can turn your circumstances upside-down to fulfill it in this life if He wishes, no matter how improbable that seems. It can mean letting go of a dream permanently for this life, knowing He can fulfill it when His eternal kingdom comes and time, resources, and capacity will not fail us. It can mean saying a risky "yes" to a door He has clearly opened, a calling with His fingerprints all over it, and it can mean saying a trusting "no" to what the world urges as a path to prosperity and happiness, for the sake of better and eternal values.

Courage has as many shades and hues as there are fingerprints. This week for me, courage requires going to a cancer-imaging appointment alone (but not alone, for He is with me) due to COVID restrictions. It means facing an hour in an uncomfortable position and getting an IV, which has often caused me problems in the past. It means the wait in uncertainty for an uncertain amount of time to know results, praying for no recurrence of breast cancer, praying the Lord would keep me on my feet, able to cook and help and drive myself to doctors. Maybe that doesn't seem like much to you, but it's a big enough challenge to this Very Small Animal that I know I need the Lord to show up and show off. 

Consequently, I really appreciated K. J. Ramsay's recent Instagram post on courage, where she wrote, "Courage is not the absence of anxiety but the practice of trusting that we will be held and loved no matter what happens."

No matter what courage looks like for you today, dear Crumble, may you know the inpoured strength of Christ to move forward in obedience even if it scares you. May He supply every single need of yours, today and always, and encourage your courage with some small token that reminds you that He sees you, He is with you, He will not reject you, He will help you, and He will hold you up with His own powerful hand.

Courage, dear hearts.

#courage #hisgraceissufficient #trust #cancersurvivor #chronicillness #spoonie #couragedearhearts

Saturday, June 11, 2022

On Keeping a Quiet Heart

The Elisabeth Elliot Foundation channel on YouTube is greatly blessing Mom and me.

The inimitable Elisabeth Elliot said that the way to keep a quiet heart is "to put your whole trust in God who is rational, personal, loving, and in charge of the whole universe and every detail of our lives."

Furthermore, she advised, out of the many plot twists and losses of her life, "The secret [of keeping a quiet heart] is Christ in me, not me in a different set of circumstances." Ouch. But a hopeful ouch.

Lord, we trust You. Forgive, cleanse, and help our lack of trust. Abba Father, as You wish.

Tuesday, June 7, 2022

Prayer for the Overwhelmed

Humble yourselves, therefore, under the mighty hand of God, so that he may exalt you at the proper time, casting all your cares on him, because he cares about you.

1 Peter 5:6-7, CSB

Or has a god attempted to go and take a nation as his own out of another nation, by trials, signs, wonders, and war, by a strong hand and an outstretched arm, by great terrors, as the Lord your God did for you in Egypt before your eyes?

Deuteronomy 4:34, CSB

...with a strong hand and outstretched arm.
His faithful love endures forever.

Psalm 136:12, CSB

El Shaddai,

All-Sufficient God,

Bearer of burdens,

Wiper of tears--

The cumbersome, carking cares

Burdening the cross-country backpack of my life

Bend me over with overwhelming weight.

They bow my face to the dust

From which I came,

To which I shall return.

The griefs, the conflicts, the shames, the worries,

The pain, the weakness, the disease,

The disaster, the needs, the difficulties,

The despair and discouragement crying out in every all-caps headline:

They are too heavy to carry,

Too precious to discard.

You call me to cast my cares on You

Whose care I am.

To cast--

To hurl, throw, sling--

Even that unburdening takes more

Than I have to give.

What I cannot cast, Lord,

Would You take?

As I lie prostrate in this wilderness dust

(Perhaps the best place to catch

The splashes of Your poured-out grace),

Would You come under the whelming weight of worry

With me, rolling the burden

Of my self and my cares onto Your shoulders?

Would You free me from all burdens

But Your cross?

May the only pressure on my shoulders

Be Your light and easy yoke

And Your mighty hand--

The hand that brought Israel out of bondage,

The hand that kept Your patriarchal promises,

The good hand upon Ezra for his favor and protection,

The upholding hand of power in Isaiah's prophecy,

The impenetrable Good Shepherd hand securing Your own?

Fix my heart's gaze on Your hovering glory in fire and cloud;

Anchor my soul in Your sure and certain promises.

Even when all my eyes can see is desert, dust, thorns, and thistles,

Keep my eyes fixed on the invisible but

Fast-approaching eternal glory

Soon to outweigh and overwhelm

The momentary afflictions overwhelming me today.

Keep my eyes on Jesus,

The Pioneer and Perfecter of faith,

Whom You crushed beneath the burden

Of my sins and sicknesses, iniquities and pain;

Who for the joy of justifying His people

Endured the cross

And now sits at Your mighty right hand.

Only in Him do I come to You, Lord.

Hear my prayer for His sake.


If I say, “My foot is slipping,”
your faithful love will support me, Lord.

When I am filled with cares,

your comfort brings me joy.

Psalm 94:18-19, CSB