Wednesday 9th December
We go back to the ancient psalms today – those old prayers of worship, question and complaint. When I was at theological college our lecturer Jennie Williams encouraged us to take a psalm and paraphrase it into modern language. It was revelation, especially for me, as it brought those old words alive.
This comes from Psalm 80:
Restore us O God, make your face shine on us…
Restoration is a powerful theme throughout Advent. I sometimes feel like an old car that needs to go in for some repairs at the garage. Some parts of me don't seem to be working so well and others need to be given new life. This sense of needing and wanting to be restored is it is part of my own life.
The psalmist paints a picture of God shining his face upon us. It is all too easy too picture God as distant and angry or disinterested. But the idea of God shining his face upon us like a doting parent is a great comfort. It was when the psalm was written, and it is still now.
Perhaps this image is one way of fighting the curse of perfectionism. We can never be perfect people, all of us are deeply flawed but God shines his face upon us not to correct us or tell us off, but because each of us is ultimately special. The journey of Advent is a time when we know that and remind ourselves of it all over again.
Front-line Advent, Steve Morris and Barry Hingston, published by Authentic Media. https://www.eden.co.uk/shop/fr...