Despite the Storm
Psalm 40:10–17 10I have not hid thy righteousness within my heart; I have declared thy faithfulness and thy salvation: I have not concealed thy lovingkindness and thy truth from the great congregation. 11Withhold not thou thy tender mercies from me, O Lord: Let thy lovingkindness and thy truth continually preserve me. 12For innumerable evils have compassed me about: Mine iniquities have taken hold upon me, so that I am not able to look up; They are more than the hairs of mine head: therefore my heart faileth me. 13Be pleased, O Lord, to deliver me: O Lord, make haste to help me. 14Let them be ashamed and confounded together that seek after my soul to destroy it; Let them be driven backward and put to shame that wish me evil. 15Let them be desolate for a reward of their shame That say unto me, Aha, aha. 16Let all those that seek thee rejoice and be glad in thee: Let such as love thy salvation say continually, The Lord be magnified. 17But I am poor and needy; yet the Lord thinketh upon me: Thou art my help and my deliverer; Make no tarrying, O my God.
What a great day, despite the storm.
I can’t recall my age; all I remember was that I was young. My parents took me on a family vacation to the beach, and it rained the entire time. After waiting for days for the weather to change to no avail, my mom said, “Jay, we are going to play in the ocean anyway!” To the shore, we strolled during a storm without even a hint of sunshine. The waves were more potent than usual, so I remember struggling to stand in the water. One big breaker knocked me to my knees, and I struggled to stand back up. Eventually, I recovered, looking at my mom and celebrating my recovery, only to be blindsided by another wave striking me down again. I spent more time trying to get to my feet that day than I did standing or swimming, so much so that I departed with more seashells in my shorts than remained on the shore. When I ponder that memory from so many years ago, I can say one thing; it was a great day despite the storm.
At the beginning of Psalm 40, David rejoiced that he had waited patiently on the Lord and delivered. His God had inclined to hear his prayer and come to his rescue. In the first ten verses of this Psalm, he sings because he had been lifted to stand on solid ground, but then something changes in verse 11.
Psalm 40:11 Withhold not thou thy tender mercies from me, O Lord: Let thy lovingkindness and thy truth continually preserve me.
Yet again, David needs mercy. He waited, and it had been worth it. He rejoiced for just a little while before being knocked to his knees again.
Psalm 40:12 For innumerable evils have compassed me about: Mine iniquities have taken hold upon me, so that I am not able to look up; They are more than the hairs of mine head: therefore my heart faileth me.
Just when the Psalmist had looked at his Father with a big smile and song of praise, he was blindsided by threats that surrounded him and weakness within. His iniquities have him pulled down, and his heart tempted to fail in frustration.
It is frustrating; this Christian experience is a life of constant battles. Indeed, our days are few and full of trouble.
I can testify to the struggle; I get knocked down, the Lord helps me up only to be slammed to the sand again. I fight my sinful nature and struggle to see victory over my sin only to find another enemy waiting in line to be my next opponent. I, like the Psalmist, lose heart and get weary with my situations and especially with myself. I often wonder why the Lord has invested so much into a fella so prone to fall. I don’t know the answer to that question, but I do know one thing that lifts my weary heart.
Psalm 40:17 But I am poor and needy; yet the Lord thinketh upon me: Thou art my help and my deliverer; Make no tarrying, O my God.
Despite my weakness, he thinks of me; he helps me, He LOVES me. So, here we go again, Lord, make haste to help me again!
Do you find yourself frustrated with your repeated failures? Don’t think that you are alone. It isn’t the lack of falling that marks a true believer but the fact that with the strength of the Savior he keeps getting up again.
Proverbs 24:16 For a just man falleth seven times, and riseth up again: But the wicked shall fall into mischief.
Keep the faith, continue the fight and remember because of Christ it will turn out great despite the storm.
My 2021 Bible Reading Plan
April 1, 2021