Daily Devotional: Psalms 88:9b-18
9b I call to you, O LORD, every day; I spread out my hands to you. 10 Do you show your wonders to the dead? Do those who are dead rise up and praise you? Selah 11 Is your love declared in the grave, your faithfulness in Destruction? 12 Are your wonders known in the place of darkness, or your righteous deeds in the land of oblivion? 13 But I cry to you for help, O LORD; in the morning my prayer comes before you. 14 Why, O LORD, do you reject me and hide your face from me? 15 From my youth I have been afflicted and close to death; I have suffered your terrors and am in despair. 16 Your wrath has swept over me; your terrors have destroyed me. 17 All day long they surround me like a flood; they have completely engulfed me. 18 You have taken my companions and loved ones from me; the darkness is my closest friend.
Very few of the Psalms end in despair and gloom. This one does. The Psalmist is seeking the Lord but he finds no relief. He has stated his belief that God hears and is able to help him but still no answer to his prayer. There is no doubt but there is plenty of frustration. There is even good human logic when saying that a dead man cannot praise the Lord so it only makes sense that since he wants to praise him, God will save his life and take away his problems. But no response!
In my experience, waiting on the Lord is one of the greatest tests of patience and faith of about anything that can happen to us. We may be in the midst of a major (and maybe even life altering) decision and we pray and we pray and it seems that nothing is happening. This is a decision that will give opportunity to serve the Lord, so we know he cares. As we wait on others, we wait on God to move them to make the right decision and we wait. Days, weeks, months, and still nothing!
Or it may be an accident, a diagnosis of some horrible disease, we lose our job or someone we love dearly, leaves this earth so we pray. But we do not see anything happening or change or response to our prayers. We state our faith in God, even out loud, and we do not feel we have doubt in our hearts, but why no answer? Is time our enemy? We cannot escape its hold on us but God is not bound by time, be it seconds or centuries. Know that he is working good for those who love him.
O Lord, increase my faith to wait on you. Help me rest in your arms instead of being frustrated or doubting when I cannot see what you are doing in my life. Use me to serve others so I will be of service to you. I want your Spirit to grow in me the fruit of love, joy, peace, patience, gentleness, goodness, meekness, and self-control so I will be more like you. Lord, some are hurting really badly today, so I ask you to give them your peace and comfort. I pray in the name of Jesus.