“Give heed to my cry, for I am brought very low …” Psalm cxlii, 6a.
A cursory reading of a few psalms might make us think that those who fear the LORD will always be successful, healthy, prosperous and secure. Indeed, God has promised the ultimate victory and bliss to all who follow Him. That does not mean that God’s people will not suffer temporarily in life. Therefore, a number of psalms reflect the struggles of God’s people.
God’s people in all places and at all times have endured great hardships, persecutions, sickness and poverty. In all their troubles, they had one sure recourse. From the depths of their troubles, they sought the help of the LORD Almighty. Prayer – heartfelt cries for help – was their lifeline. Faith – the assurance that God would hear their petitions and deliver them from their troubles – was the anchor of their troubled souls. One of God’s great soldiers, David, prayed his way out of the all terrible misfortunes that struck him. His prayers (psalms) are now in our hands so that we can use them during our days of trouble.
David was hiding in a cave when he prayed this prayer. He was imprisoned by his circumstances (v. 7). “There is no escape for me,” he lamented. His enemies forced him to lead the life of a fugitive, in deserts and in mountains. They were “too strong for him.” (v. 6) He felt that no one cared for him. He felt that he was reduced to the dust. He couldn’t be broken, humbled or humiliated any further. He was “brought very low.” (v. 6) Although the LORD had promised him the throne of Israel, he was nowhere near civilization to think about it.
Yet, David considered the LORD his refuge and his “portion in the land of the living.” (v. 5) Indeed, he had lots of complaints and petitions. He poured out all these before the only One who cared for Him (v. 1, 2). He lifted up his voice and cried out aloud before God (v. 1). He sought liberty so that he might give thanks to God in the company of the righteous (v. 7). He closed his prayer with the assurance that God would deal bountifully with him.
After having received great promises from God, are you going through a similar wilderness experience? Are you in a ‘cave,’ imprisoned by the oppression of carnal foes? If you think you have been brought very low, remember that God, who is most exalted, is with you in your lowly state. He knows your path, even the hidden traps that people have laid out for you (v. 3). He has kept you alive till now. That’s for a purpose. He will bring you out of your ‘cave’ and set you in the midst of His people. With songs of rejoicing, you will exalt Him!