I hardly feel like I have the right to write a post like this. For one thing, the Lord has been extraordinarily gracious in answering my prayers throughout the course of my life so far. That’s not to say that I haven’t seen difficulty…I have. But God has been good to me.
When my sister with born with severe physical disabilities and neurological limitations, God was good.
When my grandpa passed away after a long battle with bladder cancer, God was good.
When my mom was diagnosed with breast cancer when I was just 13 years old, God was good.
When I experienced a dark season of deep sadness at the beginning of my freshman year of college, God was good.
God has been good and He is good and He will be good for the rest of time.
Now, the second reason I don’t exactly feel qualified to be writing a post like this is a bit weightier than the first. It’s because I don’t know how well I’d actually be able to follow my own advice. I suppose it’s a good thing that I’m not going to try to write this post on my own. The inspired words of King David are going to be my guide. Take a look at Psalm 13.
HOW LONG, O LORD?
This Psalm opens with a question: “How long, O Lord?” In asking this, David is not really seeking an informative answer from the Lord. Instead, he is crying out to God, expressing his feeling of inability to endure any longer. It is clear from verses 1-4 that at the time David writes this Psalm, he was experiencing a season of trial and pain…a long season of trial and pain.
“How long must I wrestle with my thoughts and day after day have sorrow in my heart?” (v.2a, NIV)
Maybe you feel like David right now. Take heart, weary one. There is hope.
Consider Matthew Henry’s words on Psalm 13: “The bread of sorrows is sometimes the saint’s daily bread; our Master Himself was a man of sorrows. It is a common temptation, when trouble lasts long, to think that it will last always. Those who have long been without joy, begin to be without hope. We should never allow ourselves to make complaints but what drive us to our knees…See the power of faith, and how good it is to draw near to God…By faith [the Psalmist] was as confident of salvation as if it had been completed already. In this way, believers pour out their prayers, renouncing all hopes but in the mercy of God through the Savior’s blood, and sometimes suddenly, at others gradually, they will find their burdens removed, and their comforts restored…and acknowledge that the Lord hath dealt bountifully with them” (Concise Commentary).
Maybe you feel like God has forgotten you and wonder how long it will be until He provides once more. Take heart, weary one. There is a Savior.
TRUST IN THE ONE WHO HAS DEALT BOUNTIFULLY WITH YOU
If you believe in Christ Jesus as your Lord and Savior, God has already dealt bountifully with you and He promises to do so in the future (Psalm 16:5-8). This does not mean that our Christian lives will be free of suffering or trials. They won’t; Jesus Himself tells us that. But He also tells us of the peace we can have when we put our hope in Him (John 16:33).
Even in the midst of David’s struggle, he remembers this hope. He writes, “But I have trusted in Your steadfast love; my heart shall rejoice in your salvation. I will sing to the Lord, because He has dealt bountinfully with me” (Psalm 13:5-6). May we take a lesson from David here, resolving to trust through the struggles and praise in the midst of the pain.
A SONG FOR THE STRUGGLE
“My heart and flesh may fail, the earth below give way, but with my eyes, with my eyes, I’ll see the Lord. Lifted high on that day, behold, the Lamb that was slain, and I’ll know every tear was worth it all. Though You slay me, yet I will praise You. Though You take from me, I will bless Your name. Though You ruin me, still I will worship, sing a song to the One Who’s all I need.” – Though You Slay Me [Shane & Shane]