Pour out your heart, your grief, your fear and your disappointment.
How long, Lord? Will you forget me forever?
How long will you hide your face from me?
How long must I wrestle with my thoughts
and day after day have sorrow in my heart?
How long will my enemy triumph over me?
Look on me and answer, Lord my God.
Give light to my eyes, or I will sleep in death,
and my enemy will say, “I have overcome him,”
and my foes will rejoice when I fall.
But I trust in your unfailing love;
my heart rejoices in your salvation.
I will sing the Lord’s praise,
for he has been good to me.
Faith and grief often go hand in hand. In a time of great trial and error, we can see that the Lord is sovereign in His ways. His Word stands true and His love endures. It is us that waver and fail to seek His counsel.
In our struggle, we want to shake our fists and cry in anger over the despondency that we find ourselves facing. Our friends have become enemies. Family has shut doors on us. Suspicion lies in wait as we move in our convictions. There seems to be no end to the vexations of the day.
Lament. Cry out to the Lord. Tell Him you are angry. Tell Him you feel weak in your resolve. Be honest and be faithful.
We cannot compare ourselves to those who have gone before us. We are our own selves. However, the trials and tribulations of our brothers and sisters in faith set an example of fortitude and steadfastness in their willingness to move forward for the Lord. May we look upon their deeds and prayers to help embolden our hearts to be strong in the face of our enemies.
As we turn to the Lord is our down trodden times, we can take refuge in knowing that the Lord can turn our hearts towards the truth of the Gospel. He wins, and in this knowledge, we can be strong. He gives us the strength to beat our enemies, and to pray for their hearts to soften to His Word.
The prayer of lament can turn to a prayer of gratitude and strength. Instead of our heads hanging low, they can be held looking to the heavens in praise of all that the Lord has given in light of the sins of the world. Tears will one day turn to dancing. May we be able to embrace this fact for always.
The Lord is my light and my salvation—
whom shall I fear?
The Lord is the stronghold of my life—
of whom shall I be afraid?
When the wicked advance against me
to devour me,
it is my enemies and my foes
who will stumble and fall.
Though an army besiege me,
my heart will not fear;
though war break out against me,
even then I will be confident.
One thing I ask from the Lord,
this only do I seek:
that I may dwell in the house of the Lord
all the days of my life,
to gaze on the beauty of the Lord
and to seek him in his temple.
For in the day of trouble
he will keep me safe in his dwelling;
he will hide me in the shelter of his sacred tent
and set me high upon a rock.
Then my head will be exalted
above the enemies who surround me;
at his sacred tent I will sacrifice with shouts of joy;
I will sing and make music to the Lord.
Hear my voice when I call, Lord;
be merciful to me and answer me.
My heart says of you, “Seek his face!”
Your face, Lord, I will seek.
Do not hide your face from me,
do not turn your servant away in anger;
you have been my helper.
Do not reject me or forsake me,
God my Savior.
Though my father and mother forsake me,
the Lord will receive me.
Teach me your way, Lord;
lead me in a straight path
because of my oppressors.
Do not turn me over to the desire of my foes,
for false witnesses rise up against me,
spouting malicious accusations.
I remain confident of this:
I will see the goodness of the Lord
in the land of the living.
Wait for the Lord;
be strong and take heart
and wait for the Lord.