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Daily Devotional • May 21

Emily Hylden
A Reading from Psalms 66, 67

Psalm 66

1    Be joyful in God, all you lands; *
    sing the glory of his Name;
    sing the glory of his praise.
2    Say to God, "How awesome are your deeds! *
    because of your great strength your enemies
                             cringe before you.
3    All the earth bows down before you, *
    sings to you, sings out your Name."

4    Come now and see the works of God, *
    how wonderful he is in his doing toward all people.
5    He turned the sea into dry land,
so that they went through the water on foot, *
    and there we rejoiced in him.
6    In his might he rules for ever;
his eyes keep watch over the nations; *
    let no rebel rise up against him.
7    Bless our God, you peoples; *
    make the voice of his praise to be heard;
8    Who holds our souls in life, *
    and will not allow our feet to slip.
9    For you, O God, have proved us; *
    you have tried us just as silver is tried.
10    You brought us into the snare; *
    you laid heavy burdens upon our backs.
11    You let enemies ride over our heads;
we went through fire and water; *
    but you brought us out into a place of refreshment.
12    I will enter your house with burnt-offerings
and will pay you my vows, *
    which I promised with my lips
    and spoke with my mouth when I was in trouble.
13    I will offer you sacrifices of fat beasts
with the smoke of rams; *
    I will give you oxen and goats.
14    Come and listen, all you who fear God, *
    and I will tell you what he has done for me.

15    I called out to him with my mouth, *
    and his praise was on my tongue.
16    If I had found evil in my heart, *
    the Lord would not have heard me;
17    But in truth God has heard me; *
    he has attended to the voice of my prayer.
18    Blessed be God, who has not rejected my prayer, *
    nor withheld his love from me.

Psalm 67

1    May God be merciful to us and bless us, *
    show us the light of his countenance and come to us.
2    Let your ways be known upon earth, *
    your saving health among all nations.
3    Let the peoples praise you, O God; *
    let all the peoples praise you.
4    Let the nations be glad and sing for joy, *
    for you judge the peoples with equity
    and guide all the nations upon earth.
5    Let the peoples praise you, O God; *
    let all the peoples praise you.
6    The earth has brought forth her increase; *
    may God, our own God, give us his blessing.
7    May God give us his blessing, *
    and may all the ends of the earth stand in awe of him.

Who holds our souls in life, 
and will not allow our feet to slip.

Anybody’s feet feeling slippery these days? Mine sure are. What can it mean that our feet will not slip, when everything around us crumbles? Whether it’s societal-wide shifts, deaths in our families, illness and surgeries galore, uncertainty in our jobs, or even just upheaval in our hearts, we may be trudging through deep, deep waters these days. 

Elsewhere in this psalm we hear, too, that we will walk through fire and water (v. 11), that our path will not be easy or plain, or, as my sister in law and I have recently been praying: “boring.” We are not promised “boring,” much as we may long for it! But we are told our true feet will not slip. God says here and elsewhere that he will hold us, stand next to us, carry us no matter what. God holds our souls in life, he wields the power of our life and our death, and our feet do not slip if we stand on the rock of his strength alone. 

Fire does not destroy the rock of God, nor does water wash it away. The rock of God’s truth stands firm, and our feet will never slip from it. 

The Rev. Emily R. Hylden resides with her priest husband and three sons in Lafayette, Louisiana. Find her podcasting at Emily Rose Meditations.

Daily Devotional Cycle of Prayer

Today we pray for:

The Church in the Province of the West Indies
St. Christopher’s Episcopal Church, River Hills, Wisconsin
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