Psalm 85: A Bridge

Nineteenth Sunday in Ordinary Time

August 9, 2020

Today, in God’s Lavish Mercy, we pray again with beautiful Psalm 85, so famous for its described eschatological “kiss”.

I thought this painting captured the Kiss of Mercy and Justice. I could not find an attribution.

On this 19th Sunday, our psalm serves as a bridge connecting Elijah’s gentle whisper with Paul’s impassioned wish and Jesus’s invitation to walk on water.

These powerful readings will carry a personal message to every one of us if we take time to listen. As Psalm 85 confirms:

I will hear what God proclaims;
the LORD — Who proclaims peace.
Near indeed is salvation to those who stand in awe of God,
glory dwelling in our land.

Psalm 85: 9

We are shaped by our personal experiences
as well as the culture of our times.
For each of us this morning,
these realities carry a message
to our praying heart. 

  • Like Elijah, how is God whispering to me today?
  • Like Paul, what great desire for faith and blessing rises in my prayer?
  • Like Peter, what invitation to profound faith is God speaking to me?

Poetry: from Babette’s Feast by Isak Dinesen (Karen Blixen)

There comes a time when our eyes are opened.  And we come to realize that mercy is infinite.  We need only await it with confidence and receive it with gratitude.  Mercy imposes no conditions. 

   And, lo!  Everything we have chosen has been granted to us.  And everything we rejected has also been granted.  Yes, we get back even what we rejected.  For mercy and truth are met together.  Righteousness and bliss shall kiss one another. 

the character General Lowenhielm


Music: When God Whispers Your Name – Matthew West



When nobody listens
When nobody cares
When you lie wounded
And no one is there
When darkness surrounds you
And when your best friend is fear
When the words "I love you"
Are all you long to hear


That's when God whispers your name
He's never ashamed
To call you His own
Tha's when God whispers your name
In your darkest night
You'll never be alone
When God whispers your name


For the tired and weary
For the hopelessly lost
His arms will surround you
His blood has paid the cost
When all you hold onto
Is slipping through your hands
When there's no one to turn to
And no one understands

That's when God whispers your name
He's never ashamed
To call you His own
That's when God whispers your name
In your darkest night
You'll never be alone
When God whispers your name

Listen
A still, small voice
Calling
Calling

That's when God whispers your name
He's never ashamed
To call you His own
That's when God whispers your name
In your darkest night
You'll never be alone
When God whispers your name

3 thoughts on “Psalm 85: A Bridge

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