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Wednesday, January 9, 2013

Psalm of Desperation; The Perfect Message

Today's Reading:
  • Psalm 77:1 -20
  • Proverbs 12:18
Read Bible Passages Online

Psalm 77: 1 -20
This psalm of Asaph is a desperate one.  The writer questions if he has fallen from the Lord's favor forever?  I can't ever imagine being in this deep and dark of a place.  The writer talks about how he prayed all night, yet his soul was not comforted.  Verse 3 stands out to me:
I think of God and I moan, overwhelmed with longing for his help.
Have you ever been in a situation where you longed with all your soul for the Lord to help you, yet it seemed like nothing was ever going to happen?  Like the Lord wasn't listening?

Well, I don't have an answer for that.  The Lord has a reason for all the things He does or does not do.  I pray that I am never in a situation so deep that I fear I will never crawl free from it.  The thought is terrifying. 

What I can say is that this psalm ends with praise to the Lord.  Just when Asaph thought that the Lord had turned from him forever (verse 10), he sat back and remembered all the Lord had done (11).  He then listed so many great and wondrous things that the Lord had done as He delivered the Israelites from Egypt. 

This psalm ends in praise, as have almost all the psalms I have read so far where the writer is desperate for help.  So I cannot know the truly dark, desperate situation.  But I can say this -- remember to praise the Lord in the midst of the storm.  That, and read Psalms!  It is full of desperate people, their trials, and their later triumphs.  

Proverbs 12:18
Some people make cutting remarks, but the words of the wise bring healing.
This is EXACTLY what I needed to hear right now.  Thank you Lord!  I am currently on my lunch break while doing this study.  I have had a particularly taxing morning at work, dealing with a group of 35 people who seem to have little regard for the person behind the project (me).  They have been rude to my face and I have had to resist cutting back at them.  This is not like customer service with your telephone company -- we all work at the same place, so better manners are expected.

I was feeling .. well, many things.  Some anger, resentment, just plain tiredness.  Before I started today's reading I prayed for the Lord to restore my soul, to help me come back from lunch with a renewed spirit.  I hardly wanted to do the study, I had to make myself -- I knew once I did I would feel better, but funny how a person often wants to stay feeling miserable.

So that one proverb -- 12:18 -- was on my list for today's reading.  I read the psalm also, and it was good.  But it was that single verse in my bible that just made my day.  Let me know that the Lord is watching over me, let me know it's okay.  That one single verse was the perfect message for me.

I will continue to not react on the cutting remarks, and will attempt to keep any words I say wise.  Thank you, Lord.

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