Thursday, April 16
Scripture: 1 Samuel 19, 1 Chronicles 7, Psalm 59, Matthew 4
Psalm 59:4 I have done nothing wrong, yet they prepare to attack me.
Wake up! See what is happening and help me!
Psalm 59 is a psalm of David about the time that Saul sent soldiers to his home to kill him—that story is in 1 Samuel 19. The psalm has three movements.
The psalm begins with a cry for help. “Rescue me, protect me, save me!” David insists on his innocence: “I have done nothing wrong.” Then this startling prayer: “Wake up! See what is happening and help me!” Some people might consider that inappropriate—yelling at God, “Wake up!” But David evidently had no problem being that honest and direct with God.
In the middle section of the psalm, David describes his enemies and their behavior, asks for God’s intervention, and then begins to voice his confidence that God will rescue him. “You are my strength; I wait for you to rescue me…In his unfailing love, my God will stand with me.”
The psalm ends with praise. “I will sing about your power…your unfailing love…You have been my refuge, a place of safety…O my strength, to you I sing praises.”
David moves from protesting and challenging God, to confidence and faith, and finally to praise.
I’ve experienced this same movement in prayer.
When we pray, we can be completely honest with God, and if we stay in the conversation, He will help us move along to faith and finally to praise. But it starts with the kind of honesty that says, “God, wake up! See what is happening and help me!”
C.S. Lewis wrote, “It is no use to ask God with factitious earnestness for A when our whole mind is in reality filled with the desire for B. We must lay before Him what is in us, not what ought to be in us.” (Letters to Malcolm Chiefly on Prayer, Letter 4)
Be honest with God in prayer. He can handle it! And then stay in the conversation long enough for Him to help you move to faith and praise.
Prayer: Lord, I’ve got some “Wake up!” prayers today! Let’s talk! And as we do, help me move to a place of trust and praise.