Skip to main content

Prayers in a Time of Suffering

The Deluge, John Martin [Public domain], via Wikimedia Commons
Hear my cry, O God; listen to my prayer.

From the ends of the earth I call to you, I call as my heart grows faint; lead me to the rock that is higher than I.  For you have been my refuge, a strong tower against the foe.

I long to dwell in your tent forever and take refuge in the shelter of your wings.  For you, God, have heard my vows; you have given me the heritage of those who fear your name.

Increase the days of the king’s life, his years for many generations.  May he be enthroned in God’s presence forever; appoint your love and faithfulness to protect him.

Then I will ever sing in praise of your name and fulfill my vows day after day.
-Psalm 61

There are times of loss and suffering when we feel distant from God.  We feel like we are in a place, on earth, that is one of the furthest from God.  That is how is feels, because we are suffering.  We are tired and our heart is faint.

In that time, our prayer is, "Lead me to the rock that is higher than I".  We want to be grounded on that rock that gives us solid stability.  We feel wobbly and want to feel steady again.

Feeling like you are distant from God and faint of heart is real.  David probably went through those kinds of times and later reflected about it, writing this psalm.  When we are suffering, we don't always think straight or have theological insight.

 If you feel far from God, that is normal and temporary.  If you feel fainthearted, that is normal too.  Our humanity gets tired and has limits.

Notice that, "I feel like I am at the end of the earth", and "I am fainthearted", are not followed by, "And please forgive me."  We are human.  We get stressed out, tired, disappointed, sad, angry, confused, devastated, grieved, and even suicidal.  This is called 'the human condition'.

What we do when we are there is what David's word's are admonishing us to.  We're going through suffering, warfare, a bad day, a bad week, setbacks, losses, and impossible times.  Cry out.  Pray, even when you feel like God is far off and your heart is weak.

When you are in that place, you probably will not have faith-filled, beautiful, crafted-prayers.  My prayers, when I am in that place, are whimpers and whispers, as from a person who is simply out of breath and low on energy.  My heart was faint and I felt far away from God.

God heard.


Comments

Popular posts from this blog

The Two Disciples and The Two Donkeys

When they approached Jerusalem and came to Bethphage on the Mount of Olives, Jesus gave two disciples a task.  He said to them, “Go into the village over there. As soon as you enter, you will find a donkey tied up and a colt with it. Untie them and bring them to me.  If anybody says anything to you, say that the Lord needs it.” He sent them off right away.  Now this happened to fulfill what the prophet said,  Say to Daughter Zion, “Look, your king is coming to you, humble and riding on a donkey, and on a colt the donkey’s offspring.”  The disciples went and did just as Jesus had ordered them.  They brought the donkey and the colt and laid their clothes on them. Then he sat on them.
-Matthew 21:1-7

On what we call Palm Sunday, Jesus rode a donkey into Jerusalem. But, he had two disciples get two donkeys: a mother donkey and her colt. Jesus rode the young male who had never been ridden before. In his carefulness and perhaps kindness towards these two donkeys, he had th…

God Will Always Bless Your Rest, by Graham Cooke

Graham Cooke:

"So in Genesis 2, by the seventh day, God completed his work which he had done and he rested on the 7th day from all his work he had done, and then God blessed the seventh day and sanctified it, because in it he rested from all his work which God had created and made.

God will always bless your rest.

Always.

Since I learned rest, there has never been a time when God has not blessed that rest and honored that rest and sanctified my rest.

In other words, set aside peace for me; set aside rest for me.

So, for me, therefore, when God blesses something and sanctifies it and sets it apart; what that means is rest is always available as an absolute essential for life.

So, every circumstance you encounter already has rest in the issue.

No matter how hard, no matter how harsh, no matter how difficult, no matter how awful; every single circumstance has rest, because it's the one thing that God has blessed and sanctified, in terms of his relationship with you.

So, it'…

God's Secret, Hidden People

(The children) of Elam 1,254.  -Ezra 2:7

Do you feel hidden?

The name Elam means secret or hidden.  Do you feel like you are on the shelf, not being used by God?  Maybe you are part of God's secret agents.

God has people who are in secret.

I have this idea that God has His attention on secret people.   I believe that God has rewards for secret people coming.  You may feel on the shelf, but you are actually hidden for a special purpose.  God has you in reserve.

The number one thousand, two-hundred, and fifty-four; tells us God's plan for his hidden, secret, and in reserve children

One thousand speaks of recompense.

Recompense means that you will be compensated or made amends to, due to harm or loss you suffered. In Genesis 20:16 is the story of Abimelech recompensing Abraham and Sarah.

Two speaks of fellowship, partnership, and co-laboring (Ecclesiastes 4:9-12).

There are hidden people who have felt like they are "going it alone", who are about to be joined by someone.  …