Over the past couple of years …. late 2019 into 2020 and 2021 into 2022, we have been witnessing so many changes and stresses with unusual concerns in many areas of our lives. Due to the possibility of catching a multitude of most distressing viruses, I often turned to and prayed Psalm 91 and other scriptures with promises that God hears us and is with us. Praying scripture out loud out of my own mouth for my own heart to hear has been a very good experience in calming and focusing my mind on who is in control of everything, after all, and it is not me. God is who we call upon when we pray; Jesus Christ is the one, as Christians, that we run to. I review his promises. I know they never tell us we will never go through life’s ups and downs, but that he will be with us in the midst of them.

” … I have redeemed you, I have called you by name, you are mine”, says the Lord. (Scripture Isaiah 43) … I am the Lord your God your Savior. .. you are precious in my sight …. Do not fear, for I am with you … “

Psalm 91 (NKJ) Safety of Abiding in the Presence of God

91 He who dwells in the secret place of the Most High
Shall abide under the shadow of the Almighty.
I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress;
My God, in Him I will trust.”

Surely He shall deliver you from the snare of the [a]fowler
And from the perilous pestilence.
He shall cover you with His feathers,
And under His wings you shall take refuge;
His truth shall be your shield and [b]buckler.
You shall not be afraid of the terror by night,
Nor of the arrow that flies by day,
Nor of the pestilence that walks in darkness,
Nor of the destruction that lays waste at noonday.

A thousand may fall at your side,
And ten thousand at your right hand;
But it shall not come near you.
Only with your eyes shall you look,
And see the reward of the wicked.

Because you have made the Lord, who is my refuge,
Even the Most High, your dwelling place,
10 No evil shall befall you,
Nor shall any plague come near your dwelling;
11 For He shall give His angels charge over you,
To keep you in all your ways.
12 In their hands they shall [c]bear you up,
Lest you [d]dash your foot against a stone.
13 You shall tread upon the lion and the cobra,
The young lion and the serpent you shall trample underfoot.

14 “Because he has set his love upon Me, therefore I will deliver him;
I will [e]set him on high, because he has known My name.
15 He shall call upon Me, and I will answer him;
will be with him in trouble;
I will deliver him and honor him.
16 With [f]long life I will satisfy him,
And show him My salvation.”

I hope that in any struggles, losses, or concerns you may have had in the past few years have prompted you to seek the friendship of the one who knows you better than anyone else will ever know you – and that is Jesus Christ. I pray for you a future with new beginnings as we all have room to grow in our relationship with the Lord we profess, and, with God’s guidance, with each other.

I have a lot to learn about ways to grow in my Christian faith and walk. Jesus said “ABIDE in ME.” I have found in talking with others who are trying to grow in their prayer lives and in their understanding of the walk of faith in this Christian life, that in seeking him and in reading his word, we can find a wisdom certainly beyond what we are capable of coming up with by ourselves. Not only wisdom,
but peace. The small group bible study I am in has really been a blessing in studying God’s word and having fellowship with other believers.

It has been my great privilege, also, to be able to contribute to the functioning of the Trinity UMC Media ministry and get the services streamed to social networks online and recorded. The recordings are posted to the TUMC website. I enjoy the process and videotaping, photography, sound, etc. I appreciate all of the people involved in making it happen every week – my co-workers, the talented singers and various instrumentalists and musicians (you ROCK!) and the leadership of Charlie, and the scripture and sermons shared by our minister Joseph James! I think it is important to have fellowship; so make it to the church as you are able. Do not just worship alone always. It is important to get involved and show up too…it is an encouragement to your soul. Got will bless you.

Psalm 16:3 As for the saints who are on the earth, “They are the excellent ones, in whom is all my delight.”

Prayer: Dear Lord, thank you for your patience in our life and presence with us in every instance of worry. The Lenten season before Easter is a time to reflect and to celebrate what is means to follow Jesus and the love he represents that was demonstrated in his sacrifice and work of redemption. Thank you, Lord, as you pour your light into a darkened world and into any darkness in my life, and also as you shine the light of your love into anyone who looks to you for answers to life’s questions in every area of life.

PS. 19 May the words of my mouth and the meditations of my heart be acceptable in thy sight, 0 Lord, my rock and my redeemer.


Susan Ward