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When I was deep in the muck and mire of waiting I would often turn to the psalms for comfort and encouragement. So many of them were written from a heart in anguish. When I didn’t have the words to pray, I knew I could pray one of the psalms and it would reveal my heart. Psalm 13 is one of those as it was written during a time of despair, abandonment and loneliness in the life of David.  Verses 1-4 say:

How long o lord? Will you forget me forever? How long will you hide your face from me?                                                                How long shall I take counsel in my soul,
Having sorrow in my heart all the day?
How long will my enemy be exalted over me?

Consider and answer me, O Lord my God;
Enlighten my eyes, or I will sleep the sleep of death,
And my enemy will say, “I have overcome him,”
And my adversaries will rejoice when I am shaken

While we don’t know the exact circumstance that David wrote this Psalm, I imagine it could have been during the many years that he was on the run, hiding in caves and foreign cities, from Saul who was trying to kill him. Samuel had anointed David king, but it would be several years before he would realize it. How long could very well have been a constant prayer of his. This theme appears throughout the psalms.

David doesn’t wallow in his anguish, however. He turns to what he knows about God.  He reads the scriptures.  He remembers how God has protected him in the past. In verse 5 his tone changes. Note that his circumstances have not changed, simply his perspective.

But I have trusted in your lovingkindness; my heart shall rejoice in your salvation.  I will sing to the Lord because He has dealt bountifully with me. 

Just like David, we need to turn to what we know of God. Turn to the scriptures, remind yourselves of the truth of God’s nature. He is never changing. He is the same yesterday today and forever. He was faithful and He will continue to be faithful.

Throughout this series I will be including several of my favorite “go-to” psalms for when I need encouragement.

What are your go to psalms?

finding comfort in the psalms

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