“My heart is not proud, O LORD,
my eyes are not haughty;
I do not concern myself with great matters
or things too wonderful for me.
But I have stilled and quieted my soul;
like a weaned child with its mother,
like a weaned child is my soul within me.
O Israel, put your hope in the LORD
both now and forevermore.”
When my sister Melissa was very small she would often say, “But I just want something I want.” Though I laugh at the childish expression now, yesterday was such a day for me. I woke to find myself missing my Papa Joe terribly and refused to be comforted by anything else. As the day progressed the ache in my heart became greater and harder to ignore. I was icing gingerbread men when the words of Psalm 131 came to mind.
“I have stilled and quieted my soul…” It goes without saying that a hungry baby becomes a fussy baby. Controlled by impulse and appetite, little ones emit the most pitiful cries when deprived of the nourishment they seek. My surrender to the overwhelming despair of grief reduced me to such an infantile state. Only I wasn’t pleading for what I needed but rather demanding what I wanted. I rejected any type of consolation and became frustrated. Angry. It hurt so much. In fact, the pain of being denied the comfort I wanted was greater than the pain of my actual grief. As I recited the first part of verse two to myself, I realized that I needed to end my discontent and dissatisfaction. My heavenly Father knows exactly what I need.
“…like a weaned child is my soul within me.” A weaned child rests in mother’s arms for the comfort of her presence. Her nearness becomes the consolation; it’s the feeling of being kept close that provides security. The latter part of verse two forced me to ask the question, “Is it enough to be in Him, to know that He is with me?”
“…Put your hope in the LORD both now and forevermore.” He is my hope, my peace, my joy and my love. Today. Tomorrow. Next week and forever. As I prepare to celebrate Christmas, the hope of Emmanuel can’t be casually brushed aside. It’s here- in my grief, my frustration and my disillusionment- that I so desperately need the Gospel. And it’s here that I find the words of Deuteronomy 32:27 true, “The eternal God is your refuge, and underneath are the everlasting arms.” Praying that you know sure and certain hope today.