Does God seem far away from you? Do you feel like your prayers aren’t being heard? Is your heart overwhelmed by sadness and pain? We’ve all felt like the closeness we long to have with God is elusive. But we’re in good company because even David, a man after God’s own heart, felt the same way we do.
Hear my cry, O God; Attend to my prayer. From the end of the earth I will cry to You, When my heart is overwhelmed; Lead me to the rock that is higher than I.
There will be times in our lives when God seems far away. We may be discouraged and feel that God has abandoned us in our time of need. But David’s psalm is a reminder to all believers that in our despair God is faithful. So, let’s dig deeper into what God has to say to us today.
Hear my cry… Attend to my prayer…
David’s longing to hear from God is echoed in our own lives. He asked God to hear his prayer and to answer him. But for some reason, David didn’t feel like God was listening. I have experienced times in my life, where it seemed like God was very silent. During these silent times I want more than anything to hear from God. I pray “just tell me what to do and I’ll do it”, and the response I get back is crickets. The silence is deafening and seems to go on forever. But we can rest assured that God will not remain silent forever. We are His children and our pain does not go unnoticed. He hears us when we pray and He sees us when we cry.
Then you will call upon Me and go and pray to Me, and I will listen to you.
From the end of the earth…
David may have been a little overly dramatic when he wrote these words, but haven’t we all stretched the truth a time or two. I think we can all relate to David feeling like God was far away from him at the end of the earth. Sometimes it feels like God’s just out of our reach and no matter how far we travel we can’t get to Him. We wonder where He has gone to and why He has left us all alone. But God has not moved and He has not changed. He is exactly the same as He was when we felt the closest to Him. Our perception of our closeness with God is the only thing that has changed. But our emotions can play tricks on us. They can cause us to twist the truth in our minds to fit what we are feeling at the time. Just because we don’t “feel” close to God doesn’t mean that we aren’t. Thankfully God has given us insight, through His word, into who He is and the promise that He will never change and He will never leave us. When we feel like God is far away from us, all we have to do is read His word. If we search for Him, we will find Him.
And you will seek Me, and find Me, when you search for Me with all your heart.
When my heart is overwhelmed…
When my mom died, I learned what it means to be truly heartbroken. She was not only my mom but also my best friend. David described this feeling perfectly when he said his heart was overwhelmed. It’s a feeling of total hopelessness and grief, that nothing will ever be okay again. It completely consumes you from the inside out leaving you empty. For a while after my mom’s death, I was so overcome by emotion that I didn’t know what to do with it all. The flood of tears from deep down inside of me just wouldn’t stop. The grief left me feeling overwhelmed and worn down. Have you felt this way too? Maybe you’ve lost a loved one, or you’re in the midst of a crisis that seems impossible to get through. If your heart is broken and overwhelmed, here is God’s promise to you.
The Lord is near to those who have a broken heart…
Lead me to the rock that is higher than I…
Trying to get from one side of a raging river to the other side all alone is an impossible task. You just can’t do it by yourself. The waters are too strong and you will be pulled under in no time at all. So, you have to look for something to help you cross the river, like a huge rock to stand on. Every day, we are faced with a world full of metaphorical raging rivers to cross. And just like we can’t face a real river on our own, we can’t face life’s rivers alone either. God is our rock and firm ground. He is our safe place to stand when life becomes too much to handle. He will get us through the raging waters ahead.
When you pass through the waters, I will be with you; And through the rivers, they will not overflow you…
We will have struggles and disappointments in life and sometimes God may seem far away. But He is exactly where He has always been, right next to us, listening to our prayers, comforting us in our grief and helping us through the raging rivers of life. Seek Him with your whole heart and you will find Him.
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Connie Rowland is the creator of Master's Hand Collection, A series of Christian digital artwork that depicts God's hand in our lives. Each picture features an inspirational word spelled out in American Sign Language with a corresponding Bible verse. Join "In the Studio" for your Free Printable Artwork.
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