Thoughts for the Day

Friday, 22nd March 2024: 🎇You who fear the Lord, praise Him🎇

Psalm 22 Death Prayer Crucifixion Praise Suffering God Jesus

Reading : Verses from Psalm 22

* The 4th year anniversary of these Thoughts occurs on 24th March 2024 - I would love to hear from you all, to help me keep going for another year!


My God, my God, why have you forsaken me?
Why are you so far from helping me, from the words of my groaning?
O my God, I cry by day, but you do not answer;
and by night, but find no rest.

Yet you are holy,
enthroned on the praises of Israel.
In you our ancestors trusted;
they trusted, and you delivered them.
To you they cried, and were saved;
in you they trusted, and were not put to shame....

Yet it was you who took me from the womb;
you kept me safe on my mother’s breast.
On you I was cast from my birth,
and since my mother bore me you have been my God.
Do not be far from me,
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 wax;
it is melted within my breast;
my mouth is dried up like a potsherd,
and my tongue sticks to my jaws;
you lay me in the dust of death....

But you, O Lord, do not be far away!
O my help, come quickly to my aid!

I will tell of your name to my brothers and sisters;
in the midst of the congregation I will praise you:
You who fear the Lord, praise him!

(Lectionary, New Revised Standard Version)


There have been a few times when I seriously considered I might die. The first was in 1962 as the Cuban crisis broke between the US and the Soviet Union. We all knew that if one of the major powers decided to send a nuclear bomb against another, retaliation would be immediate, and the UK where I lived would be dragged into it. I settled in my mind then, and later again when working for the Air Officer Commanding-in-Chief of Bomber Command, that I was unlikely to get to see 21 years of age (the then age of adulthood). I was quite calm about it, as I handed my future over to God in prayer. As it happened President Khrushchev backed down!

Four years ago the same thing happened, for me and for many people. From early in 2020 the news about Covid spread and early in the pandemic it didn't seem as if vaccines would appear in time to stop mass deaths. So as an older person with less than perfect health I wasn't necessarily expecting to survive. As before I was realistic, but nevertheless prayed for myself and all others, and left it in God's hands.

Psalm 22, a Psalm of David, is also known as 'The Psalm of the Cross', and Christians cannot but help apply it to our Lord as he faces his death in those last dreadful days. The striking thing is that despite the writer's agony he ends in a plea that all who listen to him should praise the Lord! When life overwhelms us, all we can do is to appeal to God for help, leave the outcome in His hands, and continue to praise Him!


Lord God,
Bring healing to those who are enduring pain.
Bring value to those who are disregarded.
Bring joy to those in great sorrow.
Bring hope to those that have nothing to live for.
Bring provision to those who are hungry.
Bring shelter to those without a home.
Bring community to those who are lonely.
Use and prompt us to be your hands of love across a hurting world.
Praise the Lord.
Amen. (Anon)

Follow Up Thoughts

You might like to use these prayers for those who are suffering:

Or listen to this Lenten hymn, by the Melharmonic Virtual Choir:

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