By Robert Halsey Pine
“You have turned my mourning into dancing; you have taken off my sackcloth and clothed me with joy, so that my soul may praise you and not be silent. O LORD, my God, I will give thanks to you forever.” (Psalm 30 NRSV).
David wrote this psalm at the time of the dedication of his house of cedar. The Lord had brought David out of all his troubles, and he was extremely grateful. I want to join with David and sing, “You have turned my mourning into dancing, you have turned my mourning into dancing!” In a hospital’s neurosurgery operating room and intensive care unit, God turned my mourning into dancing.
Through the Holy Spirit, God revealed Himself to me when I was at my weakest moment, my most vulnerable time, when my life was most threatened. He filled me with a power and a love that will be with me forever. Being with Him in this way was more important than living or dying. He comforted me through His Spirit and confirmed His forgiveness of my sins and those of others. He commissioned me by saying, “Tell all who will listen about my love for you and for all my children.” I am forever changed, and I will praise Him forever and ever.
At the point of meeting God through His Spirit, life and death are irrelevant. We become full in the knowledge of our loving God and His eternal kingdom in which, through Christ Jesus, a place is reserved for us. During my brain surgery event, my protection and comfort in the Lord was the fruit of my abandonment to Him, and the benefit of my Christian brothers and sisters praying me up into His presence.
St. Paul said, as a way of encouraging our patience in the Lord, “Above all, clothe yourselves with love, which binds everything together in perfect harmony. And let the peace of Christ rule in your hearts, to which indeed you were called in the one body. And be thankful.” (Colossians 3:14-15 NRSV)
Robert Halsey Pine is a graduate of Northeastern University and completed the program of Theological Education by Extension: Education for Ministry, School of Theology, the University of the South.