What Part Does Faith Play

What Part Does Faith Play

We find ourselves in a new reality these days. It seems that COVID19 has taken up all our conversations, news broadcasts and is the focus of our lives. There are many stresses and strains associated with the response to this pandemic – mentally, emotionally, physically, financially. As I have been reflecting on this I pondered

“What part does our faith play in this?”

I have seen many prayers offered on line and in letters from those involved in church. Some of them speak words that do not resonate with me because they call upon “God” to make things right, to cure illnesses etc. I find this difficult because I, long ago, gave up the belief in a being who has the power to intervene. I do not believe that “God” will protect those who have chosen to walk a certain path nor will those who don’t be cursed. So I come back to the question

“What part does my faith play in this?”

For me, faith is about opening oneself to a power, an energy that can empower, lift up, encourage, renew. It is about tapping into the energy of the universe to find a grounding in the midst of Chaos and it is about allowing Divine love to rest in our being. With that in mind, I would say that faith is needed as we wade through these unchartered waters. It is the thing that can give us courage and calm our souls. As we remember and listen to the voices of the ancestors we can see how spirit has worked throughout the ages. Their words can speak to us on very deep and profound levels.

When I was in my teen years our minister preached a sermon on the 23rd Psalm. At that time I memorized the psalm out of the King James Version

The Lord is my Shepherd I shall not want
He maketh me to lie down in green pastures
He leadeth me beside still waters
He restores my soul.
he leadth me in the paths of righteousness
for his name sake.
Yea tho’ I walk through the valley of the shadow of death
I will fear no evil
For thou art with me. Thy rod and Thy staff
They comfort me. Thou annointest my head with oil
my cup runneth over.
Surely, goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life
and I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever

His words have stayed with me all these years and because of him the 23rd Psalm became a source of great strength for me. Essentially, he invited us to use this reading as a sort of mantra, allowing the words and the spirit of psalm to touch the inner core of our beings. He challenged us to say it every day for a two week period and then we would talk about what, if any, effects this had on our daily lives. This was long before I knew what it meant to meditate and so was a new and interesting experience. What I discovered was that in the mere reciting of these powerful words at the beginning of each day I somehow, was more focused. My spirit was calm as I went about my daily activities and my fears seemed less pervasive. Throughout the years, although I do not say this psalm every day, I have returned to it on many occasions particularly when life has been overwhelming and I found myself filled with anxiety. Each time it has lifted me out of dark places and reminded me that I am not alone.

For me, this is faith and today is another one of those times when calm and courage are so desperately needed.

Among the first songs that Chris and I wrote together was My Spirit Sings which was inspired by the 23rd Psalm. I leave you with these words. Perhaps as you read them and sit with them a while, your soul might also be fed and your fears calmed and you will find a moment of peace. I thought you might also like to listen to the song (Click Here). Chris recorded it recently on his YouTube channel.

My Spirit Sings and this I know: my every need is filled.
My soul finds rest, my mind is clear, the ground of life is tilled.
I’m led in paths of righteousness and taught the truth to speak.
I do not fear when life is hard.
The Spirit’s help I seek.
My Spirit Sings
My Spirit Sings

I’m called to sit at table with all creatures great and small,
and in that place we’re joined as one to bring down hatred’s wall.
In Love’s embrace my life is held and I’m empowered to be
a sign of hope, alight for all
a voice of liberty.
My Spirit Sings
My Spirit Sings

Blessings
Valerie

© 2020 Rev. Valerie Peyton Kingsbury. All rights reserved


2 comments on “What Part Does Faith Play
  1. Harold Irving says:

    Thank you Val

  2. Carolyn Ward says:

    Thanks Valerie, look forward to the weekly reads

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