March 24, 2023
Each day, I reflect upon a word or a phrase inspired by the readings of the day. I encourage you to do the same and perhaps incorporate that word or phrase into your daily prayer.
The Lord is close to the brokenhearted. (Psalm 34:19)
COMFORT: Today I was drawn to the Responsorial Psalm, words of comfort for those suffering.
We are taught from an early age to be grateful, to understand that the good things in our life are made possible by a loving and generous God. We are told to bring that gratitude to prayer to acknowledge God’s active presence in our life and as an expression of humility. That is certainly true and if you are like me, it is an area needing improvement.
Often lost, however, is the fact that God is equally present in our sorrow. We tend to look at suffering as something God did TO us, rather than something God does WITH us. The same love and generosity shown to us in the good times is present in the bad times. That said, we should bring our suffering to prayer as well, also an expression of humility.
When we bring our suffering to God in prayer, we are acknowledging we can’t do this alone. We are a communal people, members of the collective Body of Christ; we need the loving support of others, not isolation. He is closest to us in our suffering.
Yes, the Lord is close to the brokenhearted. We will feel his loving presence when we speak to him in prayer. We will also feel his loving presence when we allow others – sent by God to comfort us – into our suffering, into our hearts.
The Lord is as close as we allow him to be.