THE JOURNEY OF PRAYER
Lord, You know my heart. I bare my heart to You in prayer today…
Read Psalm 54
For the director of music. With stringed instruments. A maskil[b] of David. When the Ziphites had gone to Saul and said, “Is not David hiding among us?”
1 Save me, O God, by your name;
vindicate me by your might.
2 Hear my prayer, O God;
listen to the words of my mouth.
3 Arrogant foes are attacking me;
ruthless people are trying to kill me—
people without regard for God.[c]
4 Surely God is my help;
the Lord is the one who sustains me.
5 Let evil recoil on those who slander me;
in your faithfulness destroy them.
6 I will sacrifice a freewill offering to you;
I will praise your name, Lord, for it is good.
7 You have delivered me from all my troubles,
and my eyes have looked in triumph on my foes.
a Psalm 54:1 In Hebrew texts 54:1-7 is numbered 54:3-9.
b Psalm 54:1 Title: Probably a literary or musical term
c Psalm 54:3 The Hebrew has Selah (a word of uncertain meaning) here.
New International Version (NIV)
Holy Bible, New International Version®, NIV® Copyright ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 by Biblica, Inc.® Used by permission. All rights reserved worldwide.
ReflectAre you honest with God?
Like Psalm 54, I approach prayer with my agenda but invariably the Lord leads me in a different direction. It is like setting out on a journey only to discover that someone else is navigating!
Like the psalmist, we pray when desperation consumes us (3). We pray because we believe God cares enough to hear and has the power to make a difference (1,2).
Verse 5 seems out of kilter with Jesus’ command to love our enemies and do good to those who persecute us, but it is the first step in the right direction. Being honest with God about the problem, the people causing the problem and our attitude to them (3,5) is better than rehearsing the injustice with others or letting the sense of unfairness fester within.
When our every thought and emotion is circling around and around a problem, verse 4 cuts through. God can help us deal with our situation because he is in it with us. He helps us change our attitude. He gives us strength to endure and turns our thoughts to what he has already done. Remembering who God is and what he has done changes the direction of our prayer from despair to hope (7).
Set time aside today, or in the week ahead, to spend time on your own prayer journey with the Lord. You can go even further and start a prayer journal to record your journey.
Lord, remind me of who You are; give me hope today.
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