Devotions from Tri-City ELCA Pastors – Pastor Tia of Christ the King, May 06, 2020

When laying in my bed at night, I find myself praying much more intentionally and more intensive right now than just a couple of months ago. Has my faith grown? I am not sure. But my fear has grown and my level of discomfort and the feeling of uncertainty.

So, I pray. I actually mostly lament. I always try to end with some gratitude. Sometimes, this part gets really short at the moment.

 At night, I stumble my prayers. During the day, I find reading the Psalms helpful. These ancient prayers, that are so utterly human and not afraid to hold God responsible for everything in life.

Well, a friend taught me to rewrite Psalms with my own words, to lament, and to praise my life. Writing this was a prayer itself, a cleansing, honest, refreshing, creative process. Where I borrowed language and images from thousands of years ago and intermixed them with my own.

Oh God, my God

why have you forsaken me?

Why are you so far from helping me.

O my God, I cry during the day, but You do not answer.

I cry during the night, but I find no rest. 

I lay in bed and pray and pray

Until I fall asleep with wild dreams.

Yet You are holy. I have always trusted in you and you have brought me here.

But I am all tired and sad

I am all frustrated and afraid,

I am not sick, but I am lonely,

I miss my family, my friends, my church, my neighbors so badly.

I miss traveling and planning ahead.

I miss going to the theatres and singing with my choir.

I miss my old life.

Sometimes, I cannot breathe.

I wait in my home

huddled together with my family 24/7

not for warmth

but for safety.

Do not be far from me, God,

for trouble is near.

And there is no one to help. 

I am poured out like water.

And all my bones are out of joint.

My heart is like a melted candle within me. 

I get so angry when I hear, that again,

mostly black and brown bodies suffer.

In this country.

And worldwide.


Our essential workers: mostly black and brown bodies.

Out there to make sure we can stay safely at home.

The unemployed:

disproportionately many black and brown bodies.

People with underlying conditions:

disproportionately many black and brown bodies.

And nothing changes.


But You, O Lord,

be not far from me!

O my Strength, hurry to help me! 


Help me to see all the needs.

Help me to help others.

Help me to protect myself and others.


I listen for your voice,

hoping just for hope,

and I cannot quite

quiet my heart enough

to hear you.

Give me a hand to hold

in the darkness, I pray.

Walk with me out of this night.

I will make Your name known to my siblings,

to the beautiful people around me.

In the center of the meeting of worship I will praise You. 

In my everyday worship I will praise you.

When I see my kids playing, I praise you.

When I have dinner with my family, I praise you.

When I talk to someone on the phone and tears are allowed to flow, I praise you.

When for a couple of minutes we just burst out laughing, I praise you.

When I am exhausted from a full day, I praise you.

And one day, those who suffer will eat and have enough.

One day.

And then I will tell everyone about your saving power.

Even to those yet to be born.

Because you have done it.

One day.

Today I am praying.

And waiting.

And praying.

And cooking.

And praying.

And eating.

And praying.

And homeschooling the kids.

And praying.

And calling people.

And praying.

And crying.

And praying.

And watching one of my favorite theater’s performing on Zoom.

And praying.

Maybe, I can keep praying this way, when this is all over? 

(inspired by Psalm 22)

Prayers to you, 

Pr Tia!

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