Sunday, 18 August 2013

Making Demands of God

An insightful reflection from Kayla McClurg, Church of the Saviour, on Psalm 82... a faith that can demand of God, a faith that dares to pray, hope and work for a different world.

"The psalmist has experienced God as a God of justice and mercy, but when he looks at the vast needs of so many, the rich getting richer and the poor getting poorer, the nations failing to serve, he has to wonder. He interrogates the Holy One, demanding response. “What’s going on, God? How long will you judge unjustly and show partiality to the wicked? How long will you delay?”
Would we dare such boldness? Do we have such raw and intimate relationship with God?

The psalmist talks to God as one might a spouse—a spouse who has been quite a disappointment lately. Not only does he take the risk of haranguing God, he lays out in plain language what he thinks needs to be done. The psalmist gives God a “honey-do” list, a reminder of what awaits repair if God hopes to clean up the mess the world is in. Here is the psalmist’s list (I wonder what would be on mine): Give justice to the weak and the orphan; maintain the right of the lowly and the destitute; rescue the weak and the needy. Just do it already!

Do you notice the psalmist does not ask for God’s intervention in his personal life and community? The relationship between them is greater than that. For the psalmist, God is not a personal peddler of goods, a well-stocked pantry to whom he goes for replenishment. In the psalmist’s daring, we hear what a deeper, more intimate connection sounds like, what it means to be in alignment with God’s own heart.

When we dare to speak honestly on behalf of the silenced ones, perhaps it is because we know that God and we want the same things, that we are bonded with a covenant love that can be trusted., and we will be yoked together in the tasks at hand. In the depths of this kind of love, we can dare to ask boldly, dare to call God, our beloved, to task. C’mon, God, show us the right hammer and nails for the job. You know how to fix this!"