“Prayer for the Homesick Soul”

“In my distress I called to the Lord, and he answered me.” Psalm 120.1

What is homesickness? It is defined as “a feeling of longing for one’s home during a period of absence from it.” If you recall your own childhood, you might have been homesick once while visiting a relative, friend, or even a camp. Below are a couple of examples of parents who received homesick letters from their children who were at camp. (Spelling reflects the child’s grammar).

“Dear Mom and Dad,
Camp is terrible. I am homesick almost every minnut. I tried evrything, and nothing works. I need to come home rite now! Please, please, please come and get me today!” Love, Chuck

“Dear Mom and Dad,
This camp stinks! The cownsillers are all mean and so are the kids. All I want to do is come home. If you don’t come pick me up, I’m going to run away. I swayr. I hate this place!” Your son, Brandon

I remember when I was about six years old. I was overcome with homesickness while visiting my cousin for my first sleepover. Everything was fine throughout the day until bedtime. I guess it had not hit me until then that I would not be near my parents, even though my Aunt and Uncle were nearby. I remember making such a fuss that my dad had to come pick me up and take me home because I would not go to bed.

Psalm 120 is a psalm for a burdened believer who is far from his spiritual homeland and is living among ungodly people who are only for war. In this Psalm, the writer cries out to the Lord in prayer like a child would by writing or calling home from camp. He cries out to the Lord because he depends on no one else but God (vv. 1-2). He seeks deliverance from God from the deceitful tongues that harass him (vv. 3-4). Therefore, he tells God all about his troubles. He is honest about what troubles him, yet he also confesses his sin and repents of his journey with those who hate peace (vv. 5-6). Then, finally, he leaves his burden behind and seeks the peace of God and proclaims it (v. 7).

Being at peace with God means to completely trust in all that He does and says. It’s knowing He is the Great Shepherd who is always there to provide and protect (Psalm. 23). It means letting His peace rule your heart (Colossians. 3:15). It also means to live at peace with all people (Romans. 12:18) and not be anxious about anything (Philippians 4:7).

Trusting in the Lord is the sure cure for anxiousness and fear while waiting to go home to be with Him. Therefore, be dependent on the Lord through prayer. Be patient. Be steadfast. Be a peacemaker and be excellent in your behavior. Remember, Christians are sojourners in this world. We are just passing through. Make the best of it and trust in the Lord and lean not on your own understanding (Proverbs 3:5).

“Why is the World So Evil?”

“Therefore, just as through one man sin entered into the world, and death through sin, and so death spread to all men, because all sinned−” Romans 5:12

Lately we are hearing in the news not so good news. One example is the recent shooting in Las Vegas. From one’s perspective it seems like evil is on the rampage and chaos is out of control. Why is this? Why does it seem like the world is so evil and a dangerous place to live? I believe the verse above and others like it in the Bible provides insight and hope for the weary soul who is greatly concerned about the world that seems so evil.

First, the choice to sin by one person brings about death, chaos and pain. It took only one man, Adam, to make it his choice to disobey God. His choice introduced sin and death into the world (Genesis 2:17, 3:3, 6, 17, 19, 21). When evil events like the shooting in Las Vegas take place, it is because of the action of one person that brings about death and destruction.

Second, the choice to sin by one person affects the lives of others. When Adam chose to sin against the Lord, his decision not only affected himself, but all other human beings down through history. Because of this, we all feel the effect of Adam’s sin through death (Genesis 3:3, 19; Hebrews 9:27). Similarly, when we choose to sin, our sin not only brings harm to ourselves but affects the lives of others.

Third, the choice to sin by one person is a personal decision. No one makes you sin. Excuses are plenty and blame is widespread when it comes to personal sin. When Adam sinned against the Lord, it was his own choice. Adam could have chosen to be obedient. Adam attempted to blame God for his sin by saying, “‘The woman whom you gave to be with me, she gave me from the tree, and I ate’” (Genesis 3:12). As if to say, “Lord, if you had not given me this woman, I would not have sinned against you.” When we sin we blame others. Sometimes, we blame God or even accuse God of lying for saying we sinned (1 John 1:10). Sin is sin. Only the person who committed the sin is solely responsible for their sin. They must own up to it (Psalm 51).

Finally, sin affects all of us, personally and spiritually, but we are not without hope. Romans 3:23 says, “for all have sinned and fall short of the glory of God” and Romans 6:23 states, “For the wages of sin is death, but the free gift of God is eternal life in Christ Jesus our Lord.” God warned Adam that if he sinned, he would die. This death affected Adam physically and spiritually. Physically, because Adam eventually died. Spiritually, because Adam lost his spiritual connection with the Lord. There was a separation between God and Adam. This is what sin does. But, all is not lost. God chose not to take Adam’s life at that moment. The Lord provided hope through a promise (Genesis 3:15) and a covering for Adam’s sin through the sacrifice found in Genesis 3:21. That sacrifice became the future hope of Adam and his race through the perfect sacrifice found in Christ Jesus our Lord (Hebrews 10:14). This is the same hope for anyone who repents from their sin and commits themselves to Christ Jesus as Lord and Savior. The Bible says they will be saved (Romans 10:9-10; 13).

All this to say, why is the world so evil? It’s because of sin. Is there hope in the world? Yes, it’s found in the person of Jesus Christ. One day, the Lord will create a new heaven and earth that is without sin and evil. But, only those who have trusted in Him alone for salvation will occupy that place. Choose Christ today for the blessed hope of heaven tomorrow.