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Friday, July 22, 2011

Lord, Come to My Rescue!

Psalm 70:1-5 (NIV) 1 Hasten, O God, to save me; O LORD, come quickly to help me.
2 May those who seek my life be put to shame and confusion; may all who desire my ruin be turned back in disgrace.
3 May those who say to me, "Aha! Aha!" turn back because of their shame.
4 But may all who seek you rejoice and be glad in you; may those who love your salvation always say, "Let God be exalted!"
5 Yet I am poor and needy; come quickly to me, O God. You are my help and my deliverer; O LORD, do not delay.
I understand that he Psalms were songs. I don't think Psalm 70 would have made the top ten in sales but I know there have been many times that I have prayed it. I would have sung it if I knew the tune.

Each and every one of us has a time in his or her life when the help of the Lord is needed. These times draw us closer to God. There are people who threaten our way of living. They make our lives a living hell. They look at our flaws and put them on exhibit for others to see. They sometimes seek revenge for perceived wrongs. They want to destroy us through their words and their actions. They gossip about us. (Gossip is telling as much truth as meets the need of hurting others.) They yell, "Aha! Aha!" Their conversations will not deviate from their mission of hurting us.

Of course, these people cannot seek the Lord and continue to do this. Those who seek the Lord will rejoice in the Lord. They will spend their time praising the Lord. Their conversations are not veiled in pseudo-spirituality. They do not pretend to do what is right while spreading their distruction. They use their efforts to seek the exaltation of the Lord.

Knowing that these people are not doing what the Lord wants does not help the one being hurt. The boss who threatens and makes your life a hell is not seeking the Lord even if he has a Christian fish on his car. Being a deacon or a Sunday School teacher does not matter when the person seeks to destroy your reputation or your livelihood. The husband whose harsh words are not a reflection of Christ in His treatment of His bride, the church. It doesn't matter if he is the pastor of the church or considered by everyone else as the most spiritual man.

We become poor and needy in this relationship because our lives' have been threatened. These people do not necessarily wave weapons at us. They destroy us by pushing us away from others. They hurt us by squeezing the happiness out.

So we cry out, "You are my help and my deliverer!" We must for there is no one else who will come to us and take us out of this oppression. Where else can we turn? Who else loves us more than our Lord? Who can actually deliver us other than Him?

Then, we add, "O Lord, do not delay!" O yes, I have been there many times. I thought I couldn't go any farther and begged God to deliver me quickly. Yet, God did not seem to come as I saw one day after another pass in my distress. I never wondered where I was getting the strength to stand up through these difficulties. I did not realize that He was delivering me by giving me that strength. I failed to notice His grace as I went through the trial.

God's rescue doesn't always remove the struggle. More often, God's deliverance is in walking through the struggle. It is often the rescue that I need before I see the rescue from the struggle actually being removed. He has not delayed in being my help in the present difficulty. He simply has not removed the difficulty.

I don't know if David took comfort in this. He was chased by Saul for years. He was forced to live as a fugitive whose life was threatened at every moment. This oppression and struggle was not quickly removed, yet David continued to write Psalms to the Lord.

I am quite sure that David would have rather been welcomed back into Saul's graces and have escaped the dangers he must face. I believe this because I would like to escape my own struggles immediately. But I have this reconcilliation: I am drawn so much closer to my Lord when I am under so much pressure.

And thus, in those quiet times I am with my Lord, as I cry out to Him about my trials, I am rescued quickly. He comes; I am strengthened. I survive another day. Then, one day the trial has taught me all that it can and it is gone.

O Lord, do not delay!

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