Verse of the Day

"Why, O Lord do you stand far off? Why do you hide yourself in times of trouble?"

~Psalm 10:1

Today's Devotional Thought

July 05, 2011 by Rachel Piferi


Why Are You Far Off?

Do you have days where it feels like the Lord is far away? Have you ever had times in your life, or are you currently in a season of life, where you feel like crying out like David did in today’s passage?

The beginning of today’s Psalm sounds so hopeless. And, maybe you feel like that today. In today’s Psalm, David (scholars believe David wrote this Psalm) very plainly states that he feels that God is so far away and that He isn’t even listening to what David is struggling with. Have you ever felt like that?

When I read this psalm, I am struck first by one thing. What I am struck by and what I love about David is that even though he feels that God is far off, he still continues to pray. Don’t you just love that? And, when we look at this passage, I don’t believe that David was complaining at the beginning of this Psalm. Instead, I believe that he was simply stating how he was feeling and desired for God to hop in at any moment and help him. And later in this Psalm, after David has honestly communicated with God, we see that David realizes that God does hear and see what we face on this earth. In fact, Psalm 10:17 says, “You hear, O Lord, the desire of the afflicted; you encourage them, and you listen to their cry, defending the fatherless and the oppressed, in order that man, who is of the earth, may terrify no more.”

Verse 17 of Psalm 10 is clear: the Lord hears our cry. But, if you look at the entire Psalm, we see the journey of a man who starts by stating that he thinks that God has forgotten him. He then speaks of the wicked covering his face and choosing to not see God, all of this being done because of his pride. The wicked would rather rely on himself than on God. The wicked, in his prideful way, says ‘Nothing will shake me” and “I’ll always be happy and never have trouble.”

Do these comments sound familiar to you? Have you said them in your lifetime? How many of us have discovered (or are in the process of discovering) that things do shake us. And, that doing it on our own simply does not work. No matter how many parties we throw, how many friends we have over, or trips that we take, we will not be truly happy in this life and trouble will always find us.

When we live our lives without Jesus, we don’t experience true joy and happiness. While we all will face troubles in life, when we invite the Lord into our lives and have honest communication with Him, we will have the faith to encourage us and strengthen us. And, Jesus Christ walks with us through each trial we face, so why not honestly communicate with Him while He’s walking with you. While the Psalmist began this chapter by asking the Lord why He was standing so far off, he ends this psalm with a clear declaration that the Lord always hears the desire of the afflicted, encourages them and listens to their cry (v. 17). And, he came to this realization by talking with God through his cries.

If you are feeling like the Lord is far away, please take away the following two statements from today’s devotion:

1. Even when it doesn’t feel like God is there, He is. In fact, all throughout the Psalms, we see David crying out to the Lord when he felt alone and desolate. And each time, David asked where the Lord was and always came back to the realization that God is always there (even in the lowest of times). When we have walked with the Lord, we can recall past experiences that have caused our faith to grow, and we KNOW that we can call on the Lord and He will hear us.

2. Never be so full of pride that you think you can handle things on your own. We all will be shaken and we all will have trouble. And, in these times of trouble, we all realize quickly that we can’t handle things on our own. We must have that relationship with the Lord that will sustain us through all troubles. And when you are in the midst of your troubles, do not isolate yourself. Cry out to the Lord, even if you are questioning Him, and invite Him on your journey with you.

David was a man after God’s own heart. We read that in scripture. David had moments of doubt and fear. But, when he was doubtful and fearful, He cried out before the Lord and was honest with Him. We are no different than David. Be honest with the Lord and talk with Him. Seek Him and allow Him to help you. The Lord does hear your cries and He is there to encourage you and to take away the fear you face in your day to day life. Just call on Him today.

Memorize this verse today:

"Why, O Lord do you stand far off? Why do you hide yourself in times of trouble?"
~Psalm 10:1

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