Tuesday, August 25, 2020

Psalm 13

We love to road trip, but it's a test of patience.
There's comfort in knowing that even a king like David had some of the same issues us common folk have. Yep, David hated to wait, and in this psalm he asks God no less than five times how long?  If you've ever traveled with children (or impatient adults), you probably know too well the struggle some have with patience.  On a recent road trip to visit our friends in Ridgecrest, we experienced it...

Are we there yet?

How about now?

Are we close?

How many more freeways?
(Maybe that's only the kids in California)

David said it more poetically:

Lord, how long must I wait? Will you forget me forever? 
How long will you turn your face away from me? 
How long must I struggle with my thoughts? 
How long must my heart be sad day after day? 
How long will my enemies keep winning the battle over me? 
(Psalm 13:1-2, NIRV)

David was filled with sorrow because he felt like he had been waiting a long time, like he had been waiting so long that God might have forgotten him.  Have you ever felt that way?  David wasn't alone in these feelings.  In fact, his ancestors struggled with the same feelings:
  • Noah waited his fair share of time to experience and be rescued from the flood. Some believe that it took Noah 120 years to prepare because of verse 6:3, though other disagree.  However long it was, we know you don't build a boat that size overnight. (Read the full account here: Genesis 6.)
  • Abraham had been waiting ten years for God's promised son when he took matters in his own hands and slept with his wife's maid.  That did not turn out well. (Read the full account here: Genesis 16.)
  • Jacob waited seven years to marry Rachel, but because his father was a sneaky businessman he ended up working fourteen years. (Read the full account here: Genesis 29.)
I know that it only felt like God had forgotten David, but I also understand his doubts. In my head I know that God won’t forget me because He promises to be with us. In both Deuteronomy and Joshua, God promised that He will never leave us. God was with us on earth as a person when Jesus was born. Jesus promised that, after Him, the Holy Spirit would come and be with us forever. God can’t forget us if He is always with us. Sometimes it takes my heart longer to catch up.

The Bible says there is one thing that God does forget: our sins. Isaiah 43:25 says that when we ask God to forgive us, God will forget our sins and take them away. David knew that only God could change his life this way. We too can trust God to change our lives through His love and forgiveness. This kind of love gave David joy:
But I trust in your faithful love.
My heart is filled with joy because you will save me.
I will sing praise to the Lord.
He has been so good to me.
(Psalm 13:5-6, NIRV)
Even though David was sad about the problems he was facing, he knew that God loved him. He knew that God had taken care of him in the past, and he trusted God to save him in the future. It's amazing that David had the faith to thank God even before his problems were gone. I pray God helps me to have this kind of faith also.


  1. This is so good. Patience is not my forte, and I love reading about people in the Bible and how they went through the same things that we do now.

    1. It’s definitely not my forte either. It’s hard to wait, and I’m always impressed by those who naturally have this characteristic or who have already suffered through its development.