As I read the readings for today, an old familiar song kept going through my head. It was a song that I have sung many times and found very comforting. I checked it out on the web to see if I remembered it correctly. I found that it was sung in Catholic churches in the 60/70/80’s. I learned it as a Lutheran in Luther League groups and we still do sing it sometimes. I also still hear it when I visit Catholic churches. Probably all Christians know it and most of our readers remember it. Here are the words:
Every night before I sleep, I pray my soul to take,
Why do I no longer feel like I’ve a place to stay?
In you O Lord I place my cares and all my troubles too,
I am not sure who wrote this song but I did learn that you can find it on a CD under the title of “Hear O Lord the sound of my voice” if you search on the internet.
As I reflect on the words of this song and the readings for today, I think about how the lyrics spoke to the loneliness and insecurities I felt as a young person when I first left home. I don’t think I was very unusual in seeking a place where I would be without fears and troubles. Most of us are consumed with longing for something when we are young. Then we develop some maturity as we get older and we gain courage; we become more stouthearted as we wait for the Lord to help us out of our human predicaments. I’ve been there too, toughing it out. But now I am at the age where I can understand what Jesus says about humbling ourselves like a child to seek the peace and reassurance that we need in this life. Faith isn’t about toughing it out. It is about openness in times of vulnerability.
As adults, it is often difficult for us to admit that the deep longings of our souls make us very vulnerable, like we were when we first left home and tried to make it on our own. No matter what we have accomplished, if we humble ourselves, we have to admit that we are still in that same state of need. That is where God meets us, when we cry out, “hear O Lord, the sound of my call, hear O Lord and have mercy. My soul is longing for the Glory of you, O hear O Lord and answer me.” I am so glad that song is still in my head.
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