Overwhelmed? Broken?

Quote to ponder this day:

When you have fallen or when you find yourself overwhelmed by the weight of your wretchedness, repeat with a firm hope: Lord, see how ill I am; Lord, you who died on the Cross for love of me, come and heal me. Be full of confidence, I insist. Keep on calling out to his most loving Heart. As he cured the lepers we read about in the Gospel, He will cure you. (1)

As i read this quote this morning, I recoiled a bit at the phrasing, especially “the weight of your wretchedness”.   Wretched?  Isn’t that a bit strong?   I mean, my life certainly faces a lot of “challenges”, but “wretched”?

If I am honest, those “challenges” do weigh heavily on me, as can the guilt and shame that comes with dealing effectively with those challenges.  I want to face them on my own, have the wisdom to deal with them, and I often instead cower in fear, or at least become paralyzed by it.   I don’t think my wretchedness is just about my sin, though it obviously would include it. But we live in a broken world, and we live among broken people, and the situation at times does seem “wretched”, and that there is no way out.  If I dwell on it long enough, I can become depressed and bitter towards God, – why haven’t You helped me!

It is then that a friend, or a passage like this shows up, and my world which was turned upside down… become at peace.

I may have to cry out to Him until I am exhausted and fall mercifully to sleep.  It’s not because He isn’t answering, He does and I am often so overwhelmed, so wretched I don’t hear Him clearly.  For what He will say is often not what I want to hear, but it is always there,, and is effective.

James talks about the prayer of a righteous man is very very effective – so is it that I am not righteous enough?  Interestingly, that question’s answer is found in itself – the reason someone is counted righteous is because they trust God. because they know His presence, and rejoice in Christ.  It is when we draw close, that we find those answers, that peace, that assurance in the middle of being overwhelmed, of being wretched.   The situation doesn’t change as much as we think – what changes is that we are not as concerned as we are in awe…

So are you overwhelmed, has the situation nearly crushed you?  Or at least, do you think it has?   Keep crying out to God – until your heart is ready to listen, to be set at peace.  I love the bullet point before the one quoted above, for it states why this is effective.

“Let us marvel at the lovable paradox of our Christian condition: it is our own wretchedness which leads us to seek refuge in God, to become “like unto God”. With him we can do all things.” (1)

Jesus said it this way:

6:31 What I’m trying to do here is to get you to relax, to not be so preoccupied with getting, so you can respond to God’s giving. 32 People who don’t know God and the way he works fuss over these things, but you know both God and how he works. 33 Steep your life in God-reality, God-initiative, God-provisions. Don’t worry about missing out. You’ll find all your everyday human concerns will be met. 34 “Give your entire attention to what God is doing right now, and don’t get worked up about what may or may not happen tomorrow. God will help you deal with whatever hard things come up when the time comes.
Matthew 6:31-34 (MSG) 

Lord, have mercy upon us, and as we are seeking that mercy, draw us through it to be aware of You Presence.

 

 

(1)  Escriva, Josemaria (2011-01-31). The Forge (Kindle Locations 927-931). Scepter Publishers. Kindle Edition.

About justifiedandsinner

I am a pastor of a Concordia Lutheran Church in Cerritos, California, where we rejoice in God’s saving us from our sin, and the unrighteousness of the world. It is all about His work, the gift of salvation given to all who trust in Jesus Christ, and what He has done that is revealed in Scripture. God deserves all the glory, honor and praise, for He has rescued and redeemed His people.

Posted on October 1, 2012, in Devotions and tagged , , , , , , , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink. Leave a comment.

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