I’m so glad I live in a world where there are OCTOBERS—Anne of Green Gables
October has always been my favorite month. The crisp air, not to mention leaves, the hot apple cider, and pumpkins everywhere. When I was a kid, I loved trick or treating in our small town especially at the Fisher’s home where the homemade popcorn balls were to be found. Now, I look forward to putting out Autumn decorations, roasting marshmallows over an open fire, watching “Meet Me in St. Louis,” going to the Fair (previously the Kansas State Fair and currently the NC State Fair), and eating everything pumpkin. But the real reason I love October, almost certainly has to do with it being my birthday month, not to mention a baby girl’s birth the day before MY birthday, 27 years ago (October 7, 1990).
So, for this month, my favorite month of the year, I want to share prayers through the Psalms that “overflow [with] a living, dynamic relationship with the one true God who [hears] in the day of trouble (Ps. 50:15) [Holman Old Testament Commentary, H.O.T. C.]. And who can deny the day of trouble? as we read the horrific happenings all around the world, and just today are hearing the news from Las Vegas of the deadliest shooting in modern day history.
How do we pray for so many hearts and lives that are hurting? How can we lie down at night and sleep in peace?
“Be gracious to me and hear my prayer . . . Lift up the light of Your countenance upon us, O Lord! . . . In peace I will both lie down and sleep, For You alone, O Lord, make me to dwell in safety” (Psalm 4:1b, 6b, 8 NASB).
Often called “the Evening Psalm,” this “psalm of David,” Psalm 4, was a prayer of trust offered to God at the close of a long, trouble-filled day. . . This psalm expresses the psalmist’s confidence in God during an hour of desperate need. The psalmist could rest secure because God reigned supreme.
In difficult times it is critical that we call upon God. Only he can deliver us out of our troubles. But too many Christians internalize their anxiety rather than rely upon God for relief and rescue. When deeply distressed, believers should pray to God, who is a very present help in time of trouble (Psalm 46:1-2). When Christians call upon God from a pure heart, they may have confidence that he hears them and will answer according to his perfect will [H.O.T.C.]
Will you not join me as we pursue “the light of God’s presence [to] shine upon [us]” through this Autumn month as the leaves turn and the days grow short?
I must close with a prayer offered today by Joni Earackson Tada:
God of all mercy, we are heartsick over the ruin and desolation that sin has brought upon our world, upon our nation. Have mercy on us. And please, have mercy on the families of those who lost their lives in this terrible tragedy. Comfort them in their grief, and show yourself to be the God of consolation that you are. You are the healer of broken hearts, and families and loved ones are utterly crushed by this senseless tragedy – draw them to your side, and show yourself to be the answer to their anguish. And please touch the lives of the many hundreds who lie wounded, and yes, even those who survived. Quiet their anxieties and fears, and heal their wounds. Cause them, as they lie on their beds, to seek you and turn to you with their concerns. And please, Lord, restore them and heal them.
Finally, Lord, we do not attempt to search for meaning in this massacre. You are sovereign, and you are the only one who can bring good out of this wretched evil. So, bind families together; unite Christians in prayer; help churches be salt and light in their neighborhoods; aid us in overcoming evil with good. Help us be vigilant in promoting peace, demonstrating love, and helping to change the divided climate in our homeland. We praise you for your sovereignty, even over this awful tragedy. For you have judged it better to bring good out of evil than to arrange it that no evil should exist. Men cannot be made good by laws; good can only spring from a change in peoples’ hearts. So please turn hearts toward Jesus Christ, the only one who can save us from ourselves; the only one who can rescue us from ruin. May this historic tragedy turn the history of this country so that one day we may, indeed, be crowned in brotherhood from sea to shining sea. In the powerful name of our Savior, Amen.