At the end of October, we started a sermon series called, The State of Our Church.

The Psalmist cries out in anguish in Psalm 142. He makes the observation that “no one cares for my soul.” He sees trouble on every side and, as a result, his “spirit faints” within him. He “pours out his complaint before the Lord.”  

– Are you surrounded by trials, problems, and seemingly insurmountable challenges?
– Is death pressing in on you?
– Is there a broken relationship gripping you?
– Is your work crushing you?
– Are Satan’s lies terrorizing you?

The enemies of our soul are legion. God is greater.  

The Psalmist, while complaining that he is allowed to be in such a state, also acknowledges that God is his “refuge, my portion in the land of the living.” He then asks God to attend to his cry. God did attend to our cry.  

Our heavenly Father sent His Son, our Savior, Jesus Christ, to bear our sin on the cross, to be surrounded by Satan and his agents of terror, and to be gripped by death. As Jesus did—exchanging His righteous life for our unrighteous lives—He brought about new life for each of us. His righteous obedience to the Father won for us eternal life. There we will be surrounded not only by the glory of Triune God, but also the saints. In fact, a gift of faith is that we, gathered around Word and Sacrament–especially the Lord’s Supper–are surrounded by a great cloud of witnesses.  

God provides you with those who are righteous through Christ to journey with you (and you to journey with them).
We share each other’s burdens.
We encourage one another and build each other up.
The Church, that is, the people of God, are a bounteous gift to each Christian. Praise God!