I haven’t sent out a blog in over a week. Maybe you’ve noticed, maybe you haven’t.
It’s not that I haven’t had anything to say, it’s more so been sorting out what I want to say. And to speak it when I felt ready. We are living in weird times. It’s not normal while at the same time needing to become a new version of normal which we want to avoid calling normal. IT IS WEIRD.
Today was the day I got down to one roll of toilet paper. I had to venture out past the Target that’s directly next to my apartment for the first time in 20 days. I drove about 4 miles and it was weird. To see what businesses are open and which aren’t. How you need to enter the grocery store and what guidelines are in place to keep everyone as safe as possible. It’s all just weird.
And while that’s the case, I’ve tried to do what works for me to stay grounded during this time. These are my daily rhythms that keep me tied to the present while still remaining hopeful for the future.
- Focus on what I can control, let go of what I can’t.
- Be proactive where I can, and reactive when I don’t have another option.
- Get outside every single day no matter the weather.
- Workout every day for 30 minutes.
- Walk 1 mile per day.
- Read something for at least 15 minutes a day.
- Text or call or Facetime someone every day.
During those rhythms listed above, I’ve learned what it looks like to get back to neutral during this time. My walks create a cadence to my days. The sun is the energy I need. During my time of prayer over the last few weeks, I continue to be reminded of Psalm 22.
It’s 31 verses long but I’m going to just include the first 8 below. I share this because one of the things I’m working on in April is memorizing this Psalm. I have through verse 8 complete and it’s been on repeat when I need to reconnect with God and tell him this is hard. To find me in the hard. And meet me here.
So here’s my summary. And the way I’ve written is is the way I pray it. With breaks, and capital letters (yelling in my head), with exclamation, and groaning, and joy.
My God, my God…
Why have you forsaken me? Why are you SO FAR from saving me and my words of groaning?
Oh my God, I cry by day but you do not answer
AND by night…
but I find no rest.
You are holy.
Enthroned on the praises of Israel.
In you our fathers trusted, they trusted, and you delivered them. They cried out and were saved! In you they trusted and weren’t put to shame!
I am a worm and not a man, scorned by mankind and despised by people.
All who seek me mock me; they make mouths at me; they wag their heads. He trusts in the Lord; let him deliver him. Let him rescue him for he delights in him!
This is as far as I’ve memorized.
Maybe Psalm 22 is not grounding for you. Maybe it’s weird or terrifying or confusing. That’s okay. I encourage you to find something that can speaks to you. Maybe a mantra. Or a verse. Or a poem or prayer. Find something you can come back to when things feel weird and hard.
My personal prayer for you is that when you feel abandoned, you call on God. That when you think he doesn’t answer when you continue to cry, you know he’s holy. And that he’s there. That you remember what all he’s done that has been good and beautiful. And that you know he ultimately rescues you.
If Psalm 22 interests you, I’ve listed it out in its entirety from the CSB version of the bible below. If you are interested in memorizing it this month along with me, let me know!
1 My God, my God, why have you abandoned me?
Why are you so far from my deliverance
and from my words of groaning?
2 My God, I cry by day, but you do not answer,
by night, yet I have no rest.
3 But you are holy,
enthroned on the praises of Israel.
4 Our fathers trusted in you;
they trusted, and you rescued them.
5 They cried to you and were set free;
they trusted in you and were not disgraced.
6 But I am a worm and not a man,
scorned by mankind and despised by people.
7 Everyone who sees me mocks me;
they sneer[a] and shake their heads:
8 “He relies on[b] the Lord;
let him save him;
let the Lord[c] rescue him,
since he takes pleasure in him.”
9 It was you who brought me out of the womb,
making me secure at my mother’s breast.
10 I was given over to you at birth;[d]
you have been my God from my mother’s womb.
11 Don’t be far from me, because distress is near
and there’s no one to help.
12 Many bulls surround me;
strong ones of Bashan encircle me.
13 They open their mouths against me—
lions, mauling and roaring.
14 I am poured out like water,
and all my bones are disjointed;
my heart is like wax,
melting within me.
15 My strength is dried up like baked clay;
my tongue sticks to the roof of my mouth.
You put me into the dust of death.
16 For dogs have surrounded me;
a gang of evildoers has closed in on me;
they pierced[e] my hands and my feet.
17 I can count all my bones;
people[f] look and stare at me.
18 They divided my garments among themselves,
and they cast lots for my clothing.
19 But you, Lord, don’t be far away.
My strength, come quickly to help me.
20 Rescue my life from the sword,
my only life[g] from the power of these dogs.
21 Save me from the lion’s mouth,
from the horns of wild oxen.
You answered me![h]
22 I will proclaim your name to my brothers and sisters;
I will praise you in the assembly.
23 You who fear the Lord, praise him!
All you descendants of Jacob, honor him!
All you descendants of Israel, revere him!
24 For he has not despised or abhorred
the torment of the oppressed.
He did not hide his face from him
but listened when he cried to him for help.
25 I will give praise in the great assembly
because of you;
I will fulfill my vows
before those who fear you.[i]
26 The humble will eat and be satisfied;
those who seek the Lord will praise him.
May your hearts live forever!
27 All the ends of the earth will remember
and turn to the Lord.
All the families of the nations
will bow down before you,
28 for kingship belongs to the Lord;
he rules the nations.
29 All who prosper on earth will eat and bow down;
all those who go down to the dust
will kneel before him—
even the one who cannot preserve his life.
30 Their descendants will serve him;
the next generation will be told about the Lord.
31 They will come and declare his righteousness;
to a people yet to be born
they will declare what he has done.