Bible study, FAITH



Lord, hear my prayer,
    listen to my cry for mercy;
in your faithfulness and righteousness
    come to my relief.
Do not bring your servant into judgment,
    for no one living is righteous before you.
The enemy pursues me,
    he crushes me to the ground;
he makes me dwell in the darkness
    like those long dead.
So my spirit grows faint within me;
    my heart within me is dismayed.
I remember the days of long ago;
    I meditate on all your works
    and consider what your hands have done.
I spread out my hands to you;
    I thirst for you like a parched land.[a]

Answer me quickly, Lord;
    my spirit fails.
Do not hide your face from me
    or I will be like those who go down to the pit.
Let the morning bring me word of your unfailing love,
    for I have put my trust in you.
Show me the way I should go,
    for to you I entrust my life.
Rescue me from my enemies, Lord,
    for I hide myself in you.
10 Teach me to do your will,
    for you are my God;
may your good Spirit
    lead me on level ground.

11 For your name’s sake, Lord, preserve my life;
    in your righteousness, bring me out of trouble.
12 In your unfailing love, silence my enemies;
    destroy all my foes,
    for I am your servant.

Do you know who wrote the above?

David did in Psalm 143.

What an amazing Psalm and how appropriate and timely for what we are dealing with during this season of uncertainty and unrest.

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My husband and I were talking the other day. Who would have thought a year ago we would be dealing with a pandemic, civil unrest, extreme weather conditions, and high unemployment. And all at the same time!

Certainly, no one could predict this. But the feelings we are experiencing are compounded by the fact that it’s all happening at once.

What do we do for entertainment? We can’t go out to dinner or a movie. We even have to be careful about public places. And what fun is it even grocery shopping when we have to wear masks?

I have now become a “grab and go” kind of shopper. I’m also spending less money. Are you?

David wasn’t going through these particular circumstances but he felt just like we do.

He felt anxiety.

We feel anxiety.

He felt crushed.

We feel crushed.

He felt confined and restricted. We certainly feel confined. No matter how pleasant our physical place of confinement is, after a while, we feel like we’re living in a cave, as well, don’t we?

But what did David do when he felt that way?

He cried out to God.

"Listen to this prayer of mine" Psalm 143:1
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Psalm: 143:1 ( I don’t usually read contemporary translations but this one from The Message clearly conveys the tone and tenor of the rest of the chapter. )

Listen to this prayer of mine, God;
    pay attention to what I’m asking.

Answer me—you’re famous for your answers!

“Let’s take a look at this verse.

First of all, David is honest about how he feels. Oh, that we would do the same. I’m always surprised that Christians think they can’t express their honest and deepest emotions to God, especially during prayer. Who in the world came up with this idea? It sure wasn’t the persons whose prayers we read in Scripture.

There is no prayer in scripture that is not emotional, honest, and from the heart.

Are you wondering how I know that?

Because up to this point I have read over one hundred of the over three hundred prayers (some say five hundred) in Scripture and the prayers of each are heartfelt and passionate. I have no reason to believe that the rest won’t be the same.

Think of the Disciples Prayer. (Many scholars don’t consider the prayer we recite at church as the Lord’s Prayer. That prayer is found in John 17.) The Disciple’s prayer, the prayer we pray at church, addresses temptation, evil, sins, and ends with a passionate “for yours is the kingdom, the power, and the glory forever!” I can’t imagine this prayer was prayed the way we do in church today. I imagine it being prayed passionately because of the word, kingdom, power, and glory..

The next post will look at verses three and four as we continue with “The Solution”.

Pray from your heart.

God bless and have a great day.

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