Has the Lord been good to you? David thought so when he wrote those words in Psalm 13:6. How many times has all the good the Lord has done for us been overshadowed by all that’s not going well inside and around us? David calls out to the Lord in his distress. He knew to pray first, and worship, as this psalm is “for the director of music”. Once again (see Psalm 6:3), David asks the question, “How long?” to the Lord, which is permissible with a right heart. Several times in the Psalms, David asks the Lord to work with urgency on his behalf. On several occasion, David prays, “Come quickly to my aid” (Psalm 22:19), “make haste” (40:13), and “do not delay” (40:17). Maybe we should pray with more urgency like David? Perhaps we have not because we ask not (James 4:2). David wrestled with three things here in Psalm 13:1-2.
First, David wanted more of God’s face (v. 1). God’s face represented His presence and favor (Numbers 6:24-25). This was about relationship, not provision. In difficulties, it can seem like God is a thousand miles away. But He is “ever-present in time of need” (Psalm 46:1). What better way to sense more of God’s presence than to call on Him in prayer and worship? Second, David wrestled with his thoughts and sorrow in his heart (v. 2a). If left unchecked, our thoughts and attitude can turn bitter and even lead to grief and sadness. During some rough times, David had to give his soul a pep talk and focus his faith and hope on the Lord (Psalm 42:5, 11; 43:5). Lastly, David faced enemies that were triumphing over him. Perhaps this was Saul who was chasing and attempting to kill him (1 Samuel 18-19)? One thing David did right was desire God’s face first instead of dealing with his thoughts, feelings, and enemies first. He understood seeking God first would handle the rest. The peace and presence of God can drive away fears, feelings, and foes!
David knew he needed God to “give light to his eyes” (v. 3). This was spiritual, emotional, and physical strength, wisdom, and renewal. Sometimes, lingering problems can sap us of every ounce of strength – to the point of feeling like death is coming. David didn’t want his enemies to rejoice over his defeat (v. 4). He wanted the Lord to be glorified. While he waited on the Lord to renew his strength, David would, “Sing the Lord’s praise for He has been good to me” (v. 6). David announced his faith had been renewed by focusing on the Lord by exclaiming in contradiction to his feelings, thoughts, and even situations, “But I trust in Your unfailing love; my heart rejoices in your salvation” (v. 5). In using the word “unfailing”, David was reminding himself that God was trustworthy and timely. Yes, he was asking God to “hurry”, but he knew God’s timing was perfect (Psalm 31:15). When we begin to praise God, our feelings, fears, and foes fade and we’re reminded, “He’s been so good to me!”
1. Have you forgotten about the goodness of the Lord?
2. Do you struggle more with your feelings, thoughts, or circumstances?
3. How do you combat sorrow, grief, and depression?
Lord, I trust You and Your timing. Thank you for your unfailing love. I rejoice in Your salvation! You’ve always come through, even when I’ve been blinded by my feeling, thoughts, and situations. There is no one like You. You’ve been so good to me!
Stephen and his wife Haley have called Arkansas home all of their lives. Stephen has served in several ministry roles over the last 25 years and as a lead pastor for the last 8 years. Stephen attended Williams Baptist College and earned a BA in Biblical Studies from Ouachita Baptist University, an MA, MDiv, and DMin in Christian Leadership and Pastoral Ministries from Liberty University. When not pastoring, Stephen enjoys running, cycling, reading, writing, camping, fishing, and spending time with his family.
I’m truly enjoy your commentary on the Psalms! It’s a book of prayers which I use for my life. Thank you
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