The Story for the
Second Sunday in Lent
February 28, 2021
prepared by the Rev’d Rhonda Waters
I will declare your name to my kindred;
in the midst of the congregation I will praise you.
Praise the Lord, you that fear God;
stand in awe of God, O offspring of Israel;
all you of Jacob’s line, give glory.
For God does not despise nor abhor the poor in their poverty;
neither turns away from them;
when they cry to the Lord, they are heard.
My praise is of God in the great assembly;
I will perform my vows in the presence of those who worship the Lord.
The poor shall eat and be satisfied,
and those who seek the Lord shall give praise:
“May your heart live for ever!”
All the ends of the earth shall remember and turn to the Lord,
and all the families of the nations shall bow before God.
For sovereignty belongs to the Lord,
who rules over the nations.
To God alone all who sleep in the earth bow down in worship;
all who go down to the dust fall before God.
My soul shall live for God; my descendants shall serve God;
they shall be known as the Lord’s for ever.
Something to Do
Walking through Lent
This week’s breath prayer to accompany you on your walk:
This week, as you take a breath in,
My praise is of God
and, as you slowly release your breath,
in the great assembly.
End your walk by thanking God for keeping you company.
Draw the Circle Wide
Notice how the circle included in giving praise to God gets bigger and bigger – starting with the psalmist’s family to the congregation to the whole of Israel to all in need to all who seek to all the world to all who have ever lived to all who have or ever will live.
Apply the psalmist’s example to your prayer this week. Get a piece of paper and draw a set of concentric circles. Begin your prayer at the centre for those who are closest to you and work you way ever outward, expanding your prayer – and your heart – until it encompasses God’s whole world, past, present, and future.
Something to Wonder
Praise the Lord…
We are called to praise even in the season of Lent. What does praise look like during a time of repentance? What does praise look like during a time of pandemic? What does praise look like during a time of sorrow?
Seek the Lord
What does it mean to seek the Lord?
Have there been times in your life (perhaps today) that you have sought the Lord? What does that look like for you?
Have there been times in your life (perhaps today) when you feel you have found the Lord? What does that look like?
Something to Learn
The Bible is full of poetry – whole books (including the Psalms), long stretches of the prophets, and even breaking out in the histories. Hebrew poetry uses different conventions than English poetry – or, perhaps more accurately, emphasizes and relies on different conventions that English poetry.
Read a fascinating overview of the conventions of Biblical poetry from MyJewishLearning.
And the Bible Project has a video series on Biblical poetry that is worth a watch (but note that their claim that the Bible is a unified story is true but only in a very complicated way!)
Something to Pray
Holy God, we do not always understand your word or your ways.
Give us wisdom and imagination and courage as we learn and grow.
The story this week has made me wonder about…
(what questions are still on your heart?)
Receive my questions and help me hear your answers.
The story this week has filled me with…
(how are you feeling?)
Accept my praise, heal my hurt, ease my worry.
The story this week has reminded me of…
(are there situations or people you are thinking of?)
Be with all who are in need of you.
In Jesus’ name, we pray.