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Black Church News in Virginia

My Soul to Keep

Mother, cried Sally as she climbed into bed, you forgot my soul!

What do you mean, Sweetheart? asked her Mom. I don’t understand.

Well, when we said our prayers you didn’t say, I pray the Lord my soul to keep. What if God forgets about my soul tonight? What will happen?

It is difficult to watch television, listen to the radio, or read a paper or magazine without the ever present emphasis to lose weight, get in shape, have cosmetic surgery or try a new shampoo. We are constantly challenged to nourish our bodies more carefully, strengthen our muscles to become healthier or do something to look more appealing.

Certainly God expects us to care for our bodies. He created us in His image and gave us the breath of life. But too often we are encouraged to care for our bodies at the expense of caring for our souls.

David longed desperately for God’s presence in his life. He compared his longing to that of a thirsty deer panting for water. My soul, he cried, thirsts for God, for the living God. When can I go and meet with God?

The Psalmist’s soul in himself and only the living God can satisfy him in the same way that streams of water will satisfy a thirsty deer.

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God places in each of us a thirst that cannot be quenched by the waters of the world. As appealing as they are, fame and fortune, power and prestige, wealth and well-being can never satisfy the thirst that God has placed within us. Only Athose who hunger and thirst for righteousness will be satisfied, said Jesus.

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