For a Friend

For a Friend

To you, O LORD, I call;
my rock, be not deaf to me,
lest, if you be silent to me,
I become like those who go down to the pit.
Hear the voice of my pleas for mercy,
when I cry to you for help,
when I lift up my hands
toward your most holy sanctuary.
Do not drag me off with the wicked,
with the workers of evil,
who speak peace with their neighbors
while evil is in their hearts.
Give to them according to their work
and according to the evil of their deeds;
give to them according to the work of their hands;
render them their due reward.
Because they do not regard the works of the LORD
or the work of his hands,
he will tear them down and build them up no more.
Blessed be the LORD!
For he has heard the voice of my pleas for mercy.
The LORD is my strength and my shield;
in him my heart trusts, and I am helped;
my heart exults,
and with my song I give thanks to him.
The LORD is the strength of his people;
he is the saving refuge of his anointed.
Oh, save your people and bless your heritage!
Be their shepherd and carry them forever.

In this Psalm David is struggling.  Many people believe he is struggling with some kind of illness.  His cry, in the first verses, is that he is afraid that God will not hear him.  That God will not hear his prayers.  And, because he is afraid of the silence of God, he is afraid that if he does die, God will judge him as he judges the wicked.  David is afraid that he will go down into the pit with the enemies of God.

It is possible, when we are going through difficult times, to take our eyes off of the beautiful truths of God and to place them on the difficulties we are facing.  We then begin to see and define our relationship to God through the lens of our difficulties.  How can we be in such circumstances if we are the holy and blessed ones of God? We believe our prayers are not being heard and that God has some how become deaf to our pleas.  

David, though, in the middle of the Psalm, picks his eyes up and begins to see God through the lens of beauty of his Word and his truth.  God does hear.  God does give strength and is protecting him from all kinds of difficulties and evil...even if he has allowed this one difficulty.  These truths speak to David’s heart and he cries out in thanksgiving to him.  This then, causes David to get his eyes off of himself and on the people he is called to lead.  God is a God of the people of Israel.  It reminds me of what Jesus told John the Baptist when he was in prison.  He reminded John to take his eyes off of his circumstances and to look around at all the others that God was working in and through.  There is no hope in any other, so hang on, continue to believe and you will be rewarded.  Sometimes we just need to remember to see the whole truth (yes, you are grave circumstances but you are also still one who has been delivered) and we need to get our eyes off of our personal struggles and look at how God is working in the lives of our brothers and sisters.  This reminds us of who God really is and how there is no hope in any other.

Being human is hard.  We are not robots that spit joy and courage.  We need to choose those gifts from God.  What I love about the Psalm is how real it is...yes, in looking and living in my circumstances it does feel as if God is not hearing me but in reality, in the life giving truth of the Word, my God is always delivering his people.  I believe we live this Psalm often.  One moment our eyes are fixed on our circumstances and then the next moment our eyes are opened by the Spirit and we see what reality God has for us.  It’s you might have trouble singing and giving thanks but I am sure that tomorrow will be different because the truth of the Word of God reigns in your life.

No Comments




no categories


no tags