Read: Psalm 6
Be gracious to me, O Lord, for I am languishing; O Lord, heal me, for my bones are shaking with terror.
When COVID deniers talk about how COVID is “just a cold” or “just flu”, it takes every ounce of self-control that I have not to scream at them. A “cold” can land me in the emergency room with respiratory distress because I have asthma and cannot have oral steroids. I have ended up in the emergency room often enough with “colds” since I moved here that I am on a first-name basis with the respiratory therapy staff at Skagit Valley Hospital. One of the last “colds” I had in 2018 hit me so hard that I was sleeping 18 hours a day, and my doctor had to prescribe me a combination of medications so that I could mix my own Duo-Nebs as the hospital was overrun with flu patients. It is one of the reasons my family is quarantining so strictly—I went into sepsis the last time I had pneumonia, and we know that COVID will be even worse for me.
This psalm is labeled as “a prayer for recovery from grave illness”, and I can empathize with the psalmist. Bones shaking with terror (v.2)? I’ve had that. Soul struck with terror (v.3)? That’s not uncommon either. Weary with moaning (v.6)? That’s also normal.
Verse 9 describes the reason for the prayer: the Lord has heard my supplication; the Lord accepts my prayer. Healing may take time, but it does eventually come.
Be present with all who are fighting COVID, dear Lord, and protect all the health workers who are treating COVID patients. Amen.