Today, I’m reading Psalm 143. It reminds me that many days are hard. The Psalmist himself is being pursued and crushed. He feels like he’s dwelling in the darkness and going down to the pit. And some days we relate to that.

This week has been hard. One of our lovely deacons at church, June Glanville, passed away on Saturday. She was so loved. And it happened so suddenly. One minute she was sitting next to us in church, singing with us, and praying with us, and the next minute she was in ICU, intubated and ventilated. Her family and friends are numb with the loss. They know that they’ll see her again, and that she’s rejoicing with her saviour, but they have to live without her, for ages. And so do we all. We’ll miss her hugs and her kind words and the things she would have said to us about Jesus. She was so good at that. We had a special time at church on Sunday, remembering her. We made cards, and hearts, out of pebbles, and we had a communal prayer time for her family and loved ones. Tomorrow there’s a thanksgiving service.

But if there’s one thing that grief does, it puts other things back in perspective. It draws us back to the love of God and the hope we have in him. Like the Psalmist, we cry out for mercy, and plead, and thirst, and admit our aching need. And within all of that, there’s a stillness. God is faithful and righteous. His hands made everything. He has redeemed us through his son, the Lord Jesus. And he has promised us a place with him, where he will wipe away every tear.

And so we also pray, like the Psalmist. “Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love, for I have put my trust in you. Show me the way I should go, for to you I entrust my life. Rescue me from my enemies, Lord, for I hide myself in you. Teach me to do your will, for you are my God; may your Good Spirit lead me on level ground.” (Psalm 143:8-10)