Over this Lenten season, the Spiritual Formation team at First Presbyterian Church in Bend put a call out to all to submit writings for a Lenten Devotional. I will do my best to post those here daily. You can also go to our website and access all of the devotions on a pdf file.
Here is the next submission:
Never New Or Improved!
We are all victims of the practice of “planned obsolescence” that many manufacturers use to keep customers buying “new and improved” products. But, it seems the period from new to outdated is much shorter than in times past.
In the Psalms there is a phrase that runs counter to this practice. The phrase clearly describes a function of our Creator God. It’s an action phrase: always doing something, providing something helpful, solving a problem or clarifying a situation. It’s a comforting phase. This is that magic phrase —“Unfailing Love.” It is sprinkled through the psalms like the candy sprinkles on a doughnut. It catches your eye.
- Ps. 36:7 — How priceless is your unfailing love! The passage that contains the phrase is sweetened by its presence.
- Ps. 33:5 — The LORD loves righteousness and justice; the earth is full of his unfailing love. It holds out hope to the reader.
- Ps. 33:22 — May your unfailing love rest upon us, O LORD, even as we put our hope in you. What is the phrase really saying? Love is a word that almost always requires an object. As the Psalmist uses the phrase throughout the book it refers to the needs of people that are met because God never fails in His support of our needs. By adding the descriptor ‘unfailing’ it implies that God will not withhold His love for any reason.
- Ps. 52:8 …I trust in God’s unfailing love for ever and ever. When we fail and become discouraged by our actions, we have this promise of forgiveness
- Ps. 51:1 — Have mercy on me, O God, according to your unfailing love; according to your great compassion blot out my transgressions.
When those dark dry spiritual days happen, these words provide a pathway of confidence that we are never forgotten or left alone.
- Ps. 33:18 — But the eyes of the LORD are on those who fear him, on those whose hope is in his unfailing love.
- Ps. 77:6 – 12 — I remembered my songs in the night.
My heart mused and my spirit inquired:
Will the Lord reject forever?
Will he never show his favor again?
Has his unfailing love vanished forever?
Has his promise failed for all time?
Has God forgotten to be merciful?
Has he in anger withheld his compassion?
Then I thought, “To this I will appeal:
the years of the right hand of the Most High.”
I will remember the deeds of the LORD;
yes, I will remember your miracles of long ago.
I will meditate on all your works
and consider all your mighty deeds.
Your ways, O God, are holy.
What god is so great as our God?
You are the God who performs miracles;
you display your power among the peoples.
As peace blankets my soul and grace fills my heart, I rest in His never-changing unfailing love.