Oh dear, here I am once again with tears flowing down my face! I am a mess! My emotional state is a wreck and my heart is burdened with difficult decisions. Uncertainty often rules my world. I enjoy stability and knowing what the future will bring but I have begun to realize those things are gifts from God. I cry out to the Lord a lot when I am in a state of utter helplessness. When I run to the Lord, I wonder if He hears. Does He see my problems and tears? Does He see that my heart is often proud and wants to operate in independence? I know He does.
My personality tends to over think things and to greatly dislike crying. (I don’t mind when other people cry. I just don’t want to do so in front of others. I mean why would I want to appear weak before them?) I often think my tears are a sign of a weak heart that lacks faith. However, pouring my heart out before the Lord is essential when going through the rough places and for me pouring my heart out means a water works display. Emotions and truth clash when under trial or pressure. So where do I go when my heart is overwhelmed? I go to the Rock! After all, He is the one who created me to be an emotional person. The Psalms are a great start when I can’t seem to think clearly through the tears.
On this particular day Psalm 119: 81-82 stood out to me.
“My soul faints for Your salvation,
But I hope in Your word.
My eyes fail from searching Your word,
Saying, “When will You comfort me?”
David penned many psalms that referenced tears and crying out to the Lord. He sought comfort from God when afflicted. So my emotional distress is nothing new to the Lord. He understands my frail heart. Tears do not always indicate a lack of faith but show my heart attitude of the moment. In fact, David cried out to the Lord on so many occasions and even asked questions. Yet, he was called a man after God’s own heart. How can that be? How can crying out to the Lord like David did renew faith and trust when I encounter difficulty?
Well when I think of who God is and who I am in relation to Him my heart can’t help but stand in awe of His power. Emotions often seem to dictate my actions. I can be swayed by fear, worry, self-pity and a host of other emotions like a swing pendulum. It is difficult to refocus on the truth of who God has revealed Himself to be in His Word.
So let us dive into a few “teary” yet filled with truth Psalms that recently renewed my spirit. Starting with Psalm 143:
“Hear my prayer, O Lord,
Give ear to my supplications!
In Your faithfulness answer me,
And in Your righteousness.
Do not enter into judgment with Your servant,
For in Your sight no one living is righteous.
For the enemy has persecuted my soul;
He has crushed my life to the ground;
He has made me dwell in darkness,
Like those who have long been dead.
Therefore, my spirit is overwhelmed within me;
My heart within me is distressed.
I remember the days of old;
I meditate on all Your works;
I muse on the work of Your hands.
I spread out my hands to You;
My soul longs for You like a thirsty land. Selah
Answer me speedily, O Lord;
My spirit fails!
Do not hide Your face from me,
Lest I be like those who go down into the pit.
Cause me to hear Your lovingkindness in the morning,
For in You do I trust;
Cause me to know the way in which I should walk,
For I lift up my soul to You.
Deliver me, O Lord, from my enemies;
In You I take shelter.
Teach me to do Your will,
For You are my God;
Your Spirit is good.
Lead me in the land of uprightness.
Revive me, O Lord, for Your name’s sake!
For Your righteousness’ sake bring my soul out of trouble.
In Your mercy cut off my enemies,
And destroy all those who afflict my soul;
For I am Your servant.”
Here David is worn out with emotional and physical stress. He wonders where God is and when deliverance from his persecutors will come. Take heart even while David is going through turmoil He reminds himself about the character of God! Who God was in the past, moving forward in the present and future with this steadfast unchanging truth—He is trustworthy in any age.
David understands that the heart can be led astray so he asks the Lord to continue to lead him in the “land of uprightness.” (verse 10) Even when we go through distressing situations God’s glory and the gospel are on display. The world is watching but more importantly your decisions on a moment by moment basis to renew your thinking impact your next step in walking by faith. I want to be a woman of great faith so every time I am in distress I cry out to the Lord not from a heart of distrust but a heart that recognizes where my rescue will come from. I am the Lord’s servant, just like David, my desire is to be counted faithful. So through all these fears, tears and uncertainties about the future, I know God is perfecting a heart of confidence in His provision and guidance in my life during this season.
On another occasion Psalm 138:7-8 really spoke to my heart,
“Though I walk in the midst of trouble,
You will revive me;
You will stretch out Your hand
Against the wrath of my enemies,
And Your right hand will save me.
8 The Lord will perfect that which concerns me;
Your mercy, O Lord, endures forever;
Do not forsake the works of Your hands.
These words are a reminder to me about being created in the image of God. His mercy endures forever! He won’t forsake His creation. He is making those things which concern me to be perfected in His timing not mine. He sent Christ to die on my behalf so I could enter into His rest which Hebrews 4 talks about. God’s saving power in my life didn’t stop on the day I asked the Lord to have full control of my life. The gospel work continues on! Jesus Christ is what revives my soul!
Knowing there will never be another day that God’s wrath is over me because when He now looks at me Christ’s work on the cross is seen. I am covered by the blood of the Lamb! I am upheld by grace! My circumstances seem so small when compared to the glorious splendor that awaits me when I shall see my risen Savior return. So through all these tears may my heart rely steadfastly on this truth that those things which concern me are but for a moment but my salvation is for life. There will never be a more distressing situation than to finding myself under the wrath of a Holy God. Thank you Jesus that I am redeemed!
My challenge to you is to understand who God is and how it relates to your difficult circumstances? What truth can you focus on to lay your burdens at the foot of the cross and leave them there? I know it is hard but you can do it by the grace of Christ because Christ is a sure foundation.
Glory be to God Almighty, Great Redeemer and Friend.
He rose from the grave and victory gave to all who repent of sin.
I now find hope in the Words that He spoke, which give life to this weary soul.
Distress now comes but Christ has already won! The struggle will come to an end.
So can I get an “Amen!” for when Christ will come again!
And joy will never be gone so this is my song— to Christ all the glory belongs!