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Have compassion on me, LORD, for I am weak. Heal me, LORD, for my bones are in agony. Psalm 6:2 (NLT)

I love plants, but I am not even close to what some may call a person with ‘a green thumb.’ In reality, if my plants could talk they’d probably describe me using the words ‘abusive’ or ‘neglectful’. Not intentionally of course, but the plants I have sit silently every day and quite often go unnoticed until their leaves droop. When that finally catches my attention I water them and hope they ‘come back’.

The Psalmist describes himself as being weak. That phrase ‘for I am weak’ may be better rendered ‘I am as one who droops’. That phrase gives the word picture of a plant in drought conditions…or a plant in my living room from time to time. The ground beneath it yearns for water. The leaves droop under the stress of trying to grow with no nourishment.

We get that way from time to time, don’t we? For some of us it’s not an occasional thing but a daily condition. The burdens of the day weigh us down. We yearn for even a little respite from the agony of worry, the fear of failure, the shame from poor decisions, and the demands of addiction.

We walk (on the inside) like the little boy I saw in the mall the other day. Obviously done with a long day of shopping and wanting to be carried he drug himself down the hall, arms drooping, head down, staggering under some unseen load, and moaning “I’m tired. Carry me.” (You can add the drama according to where you are today!)

In Old Testament times ‘for my bones are in agony’ didn’t refer to the skeletal system that upholds us. It referred more to the emotional make-up of the person. Not only did David feel like he was drooping under the pressure of the day, the pain went to his very soul. He was tired physically and that fatigue went all the way to the very heart of his being.

Another Old Testament author, Jeremiah, voices a similar plea when he says, “O LORD, if you heal me, I will be truly healed; if you save me, I will be truly saved. My praises are for you alone!” (Jeremiah 17:14)

There are times in our lives when we feel like my plant in the corner. We keep doing the things we do, we keep giving, serving and tending to our daily routines, but in the midst of the activity there’s a whole lot more going out than coming in. We can feel unappreciated, unnoticed, neglected or even abused.

That’s when we come to the Father for the refreshment we need from his spirit. Like the woman at the well, we come to the one who promises us water, refreshing water that lives within us to encourage us along the way. His healing is eternal and available regardless of the reason for our stress.

PRAYER: Lord there are times when the stress of my day seems to overwhelm me. Like David, the pain seems to go to my very soul. Heal me with the refreshing water of your Spirit. Help me to find my strength in you when the demands of life seem too great. Amen.

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