Feeds:
Posts
Comments

Archive for the ‘Crying out to God’ Category

John, in his first epistle, has several observations on prayer in 1 John 5:14-16:

  • God uses us in prayer
  • God gives us confidence in prayer (confidence in Him, not the prayer itself)
  • God hears us pray which should give us boldness, but not arrogance
  • God give us knowledge of needs, of those who are sinning, so we can pray for them
Prayer is man speaking with God, seeking God.  The quiet after the petitions, the time of waiting on God,  is when God communicates with man.   If he leaves the time of prayer without listening for God, he has had only 1/2 of the communication, a one-sided conversation.

Read Full Post »

I love this quote by John Calvin, great theologian and church father in the 1500s:

“Believers do not pray with the view to informing God about things unknown to him, or of exciting him to do his duty, or of urging him as though he were reluctant.  On the contrary, they pray in order that they may arouse themselves to seek him, that they may exercise their faith in meditating on his promises, that they may relieve themselves from their anxieties by pouring them into his bosom; in a word that they may declare that from him alone they hope and expect, both for themselves and for others, all good things.”

Read Full Post »

David tells us of his relationship with the LORD, I sought the LORD, and He heard me, and delivered me from all my fears.  Psalm 34:4.  The things we learn about God from this verse are

  • God hears
  • God responds when He hears
  • God delivers us from ALL of our fears

One of the reasons God hears us is because He stays near to us.  God tells us in Jer 23:23, “Am I a God near at hand . . . and not a God afar off?”

Not only does God hear us, but He then does not leave us where we were.  God tells us, through the prophet Jeremiah, “Call to me, and I will answer you, and show you great and mighty things, which you do not know.  Jer. 33:3.  Some people like to say that this is God’s telephone number.

In Psalm 40:1-2, we read the Psalmist saying, “I waited patiently for the LORD; and He inclined to me, and heard my cry.  He also brought me up out of a horrible pit, out of the miry clay, and set my feet upon a rock, and established my steps.”    We learns some additional things from this verse including:

  • I may have to wait for God (I should do so patiently)
  • God moves closer to me to hear me and is not unmoved by my cries
  • God delivers me from the places that I have allowed myself to fall
  • God puts me on a firm spot, a rock (Jesus is the Rock)
  • God gets me started on my way and makes paths for me to walk in

In thinking over the scriptures that I wanted to use for this post, I realized that the God who hears makes the best deliverer.  The last thing you want in your time of trouble when you are calling out to God is a God who has a hearing impairment.   On the other side of the coin, having a God who hears well, but ignores me or makes my deliverance a low priority on His list is also distressing.  Praise God that He hears well, sees well and desires to deliver me out of my trouble and calamity.   Blessed be the name of the LORD!

Read Full Post »

Psalm 13 begins with the Psalmist sounding like he is accusing God.  “How long, O LORD? Will You forget me forever? How long will You hide Your face from me?  How long shall I take counsel in my soul, Having sorrow in my heart daily? How long will my enemy be exalted over me?”  (Ps. 13:1-2)

In these verses, the Psalmist evidences an uncertainty about God.  Uncertainty can cause one to doubt God’s motives or doubt God’s timing.   Sometimes when we become fearful and afraid, we accuse God.  We mistakenly consider Him to be reacting to us like the humans around us who may forget us or hide their faces from us or allow our enemies to over take us and do nothing to help.  But God is not like us or those around us.  He will not forget us.  Isaiah 49:15 tells us,  “Can a woman forget her nursing child, and not have compassion on the son of her womb? Surely they may forget, yet I will not forget you.”  Deut 31:6 tells us, “do not fear nor be afraid of them; for the LORD your God, He is the One who goes with you. He will not leave you nor forsake you.”

From accusation in verses 1-2, the Psalmist moves into calling out to God and reasoning with God in verses 3-4.  In these verses, he says, “consider and hear me, O LORD my God; enlighten my eyes, lest I sleep the sleep of death; lest my enemy say, “I have prevailed against him”; lest those who trouble me rejoice when I am moved.”

Finally, the Psalmist makes a choice in verse 5.   He states, ‘but I have trusted in Your mercy.”  He decides to trust in God’s mercy.  He decides to believe  and act upon what He knows about God.  This is internal to the Psalmist.  A choice to believe God and trust God must come from within.  I must, like priests carrying the ark across the Jordan, step into the water first rather than waiting for them to recede.  Trusting God is a choice I must make daily,  sometimes moment by moment.

From that choice, there is an immediate reward, the Psalmist says, “my heart shall rejoice in Your salvation.”  When I choose to trust God, I am impacted in my walk with God, in my fellowship with God.  He immediately reinforces the positive step I have taken.

Verse 6 gives us the result for ministry, ” I will sing to the LORD, Because He has dealt bountifully with me.”  When I trust God, my heart rejoices in His salvation, and from that comes an outpouring from me to those around me.  I will sing to the LORD!  I will declare to the world about my God, about His great bounty, His mercy, and His faithfulness!
To review, here is the progression:
  • Accusation against God
  • Calling out/reasoning with God
  • Trust in God (choose)
  • Receive from God
  • Give out in ministry

We all have times of accusing or doubting God, even if it is only in our thoughts.  The important thing is to move forward in the progression.  Cry out to God, choose to trust God, receive from God and then give out what you have received to those around you.

Read Full Post »

Perhaps you have had a day (or two) when you asked the LORD, “How shall I go on?”  Perhaps it is illness, drug addiction, abusive relationship, fear, enemies who would seek to destroy you or just a sense of overwhelming fatigue . . . in looking at your circumstances, did you turn to God and ask, “How shall I go on?”  And what did He say?

  • Wait? Sometimes the LORD says to wait.  Don’t go forward or back.  Don’t go to the left or the right.  Don’t seek to change your circumstances, just wait.  Sometimes, the waiting is the hardest part.  But we wait because He is God.  Like a parent who tells a child to stay on the curb because a car is coming, God tells us to wait because He sees all things and knows all things.  He tells us to wait because that is best for us.  He promises “strengthen your heart” while you wait.  (Ps. 27:14)  Psalm 37:9 promises that ” those who wait on the LORD, They shall inherit the earth.”    Isaiah says, “who wait on the LORD Shall renew their strength; They shall mount up with wings like eagles, They shall run and not be weary, They shall walk and not faint.”   (Isa. 40:31)  As you wait, the LORD may give you new strength.  He may allow you to soar above your troubles, keeping them from disturbing your peace.   He may take away your fatigue, allowing you to go a little further.
  • Cry out? Sometimes the LORD would have us to cry out to Him, recognizing that He is Jehovah Jireh, the God who provides everything.  There is certainly lots of scriptural support for crying out to God in times of trouble.  Psalm 18:6 tells us, “In my distress I called upon the LORD, And cried out to my God; He heard my voice from His temple, And my cry came before Him, even to His ears.”  In Psalm 34:17, we read, “the righteous cry out, and the LORD hears, And delivers them out of all their troubles.”  Psalm 56:9 tells us when ” I cry out to You, Then my enemies will turn back; This I know, because God is for me.  In Psalm 57:2, it says, “I will cry out to God Most High, To God who performs all things for me.”   He is a God who hears and answers, so maybe He would have you to cry out, expecting His response.

Whether you wait or you cry, or you cry out while you are waiting, waiting and crying out are done in expectation, in faith.  I wait for God to deliver me, to strengthen me.  I wait because there is none other like Him.   “LORD, what do I wait for?  My hope is in You.”  (Ps. 39:7)   He alone has the words of eternal life.  When I cry out, I cry out to God in faith because God alone knows my circumstances.  God alone has power over all things.  I cry out to God because He alone is God.

Read Full Post »