God is magnificent; he can never be praised enough. There are no boundaries to his greatness.
Generation after generation stands in awe of your work; Each one tells stories of your mighty acts.
Your beauty and splendor have everyone talking; I compose songs on your wonders.
Your marvelous doings are headline news
Psalm 145:3-6a (MSG)
Have you seen the headlines lately? There’s not much there about the “marvelous doings” of God. Instead, they’re filled with stories of turmoil, conflict, sensational calamities, financial gain and ruin, lives and businesses collapsing and crashing, dire warnings about how much worse… EVERYTHING is going to get. The news headlines remind us of all the ways our world is not yet fully aligned with God’s heart – and it’s heartbreaking!
There can be a temptation, for us, to either be totally absorbed and overwhelmed by all that noise in the news, or… to simply turn it off and look away, ignoring the very real tragedies all around us.
But what if there’s a third option we could choose. Have you ever thought of using the news as a simple cue for prayer? To intentionally invite God into your experience of looking through those headlines, but with your ear carefully tuned into God’s Spirit, instead of the media’s voice. And then to let it lead you into prayer, perhaps for things you’ve never really prayed about before.
That would help to better shape our perspective, and give us space to cry out to God, learning to pray for “God’s will to be done on earth as it is in heaven” as we ask how we can partner together in re-shaping the world according to Love’s original design… until God’s “marvelous doings”, “mighty acts”, and “beauty and splendor” can once again be the thing that has “everyone talking.”
So today we want to do just that; pray through the headlines together. If this is a new idea, don’t worry. We’ll try it together for a few minutes now, and then you can keep practicing throughout the week.
So just take a moment and consider the stories that have been in the news lately. If it helps to quickly scroll through a news app or website on your phone, go ahead and do that. As you see headlines that speak of war, violence, sickness, poverty, racism, and other injustices… take a moment to let your heart be impacted… and then silently (or out loud) invite God to move, to intervene. Imagine how that situation could become a God-story, worth passing on from generation to generation. And also invite God to show you what might need to move in you to be part of bringing those “marvelous doings” into reality.
Prayer: God of all hope, would you fill us with joy and peace as we trust in you. Give us eyes to see the world around us as you do – both in its brokenness and its endless possibility. Thank you that the same power that raised Jesus from the dead lives in us, and can lift this world out of chaos, pain, despair. Would you fill us with your beauty and light, teach us to spill it out everywhere, to be good agents of your love and restoration in this beautiful broken world. Amen.