Bible Society of South Africa

God is still God in despair – 23 November 2020

By Benescke Janse van Rensburg

Bible text(s)

A Cry for Help

1Save me, O God!

The water is up to my neck;

2I am sinking in deep mud,

and there is no solid ground;

I am out in deep water,

and the waves are about to drown me.

3I am worn out from calling for help,

and my throat is aching.

I have strained my eyes,

looking for your help.

Psalms 69:1-3GNBOpen in Bible reader

29But I am in pain and despair;

lift me up, O God, and save me!

30I will praise God with a song;

I will proclaim his greatness by giving him thanks.

31This will please the LORD more than offering him cattle,

more than sacrificing a full-grown bull.

Psalms 69:29-31GNBOpen in Bible reader

Yesterday I received a message from a friend who was shocked to learn that two Gr.11 girls at her daughter’s high school had committed suicide within 48 hours. Two beautiful children leaving an empty chair next to the Christmas table in their respective parental homes this Christmas.

My heart goes out to the parents. Did they see it coming? Was it a total shock? And, on the other hand, what caused so much pressure on these young children that they felt that they could no longer live?

Maybe you are there too. You might not be thinking about suicide, but you find yourself in the midst of total despair. You maybe recently lost your job or are struggling to find one? Maybe you had a miscarriage after struggling to conceive for a long time? Perhaps you were diagnosed with a dreaded disease or had to say goodbye to a loved one?Maybe your marriage is falling apart? Or you have a horrible boss and you do not know how you will get through this week?

Unfortunately we live in a broken world where the enemy is out to steal, kill and destroy. The Psalmist once experienced a difficult season. In Psalm 69:1-3 he writes: “Save me, O God, for the floodwaters are up to my neck. Deeper and deeper I sink into the mire; I can’t find a foothold. I am in deep water, and the floods overwhelm me. I am exhausted from crying for help; my throat is parched. My eyes are swollen with weeping, waiting for my God to help me.” It sounds rough and yet this is how we feel at times, right?

A few verses later, the Psalmist writes: “But as for me, afflicted and in pain—may your salvation, God, protect me. I will praise God’s name in song and glorify him with thanksgiving. This will please the Lord more than an ox, more than a bull with its horns and hooves (Psalm 69: 29-31).

Why is praise and worship so powerful in times of pain, depression, and disappointment? Because we are thereby demonstrating to God (as well as theenemy) that, in the midst of whatever is happening, we are still placing our faith and trust in God. We declare that we believe that He can still make everything work together and that He stillprotects us. Are you going through a difficult season? Let us start praising God. He still is able to turn difficult situations around! God bless.

Prayer: Father God, thank you that You know exactly what’s going on in my life. I place (whatever your obstacle is) today before your throne. Take it over and let your will be done in my life. I ask this in the Name of Jesus Christ. Amen

Bible Society of South Africav.4.20.14
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