Though the Christian heart struggles to find its rest in the Lord, God always rescues His Children.
As men and women of faith sink into the mire of illness, financial pressure, and injustice, they often grow tired of waiting. Seeking to make things right, they grab for the technology tools sitting on their self-help shelf.
Technology contains no inherent evil. Zoom calls, Facebook Live videos, and older technologies like radio have proved to be close allies of the church. Yet, Christians can turn these allies into enemies of faith when they abandon prayer in favor of human action. Instead of asking the Lord to provide for their finances, young Christians start trading stocks on Robinhood. Rather than cry to the Lord for health, the aging followers of Jesus spend their days researching everything from chemotherapy to dandelions. And instead of petitioning God for wisdom, Christians parents attempt to find parenting guidelines from Facebook pols. The temptation to replace prayer with human effort ever tempts the Christian soul.
God does work through natural means, restoring the sick with medicine, blessing the unemployed with new jobs after they create a LinkedIn profile, and delivering parents who embrace leadership concepts. Christians should take proactive steps. But natural means should not be the hope of the believer. The power to pull the broken soul from the pit resides not in stock accounts, doctors, or Facebook users but in the God, who reigns over the accountants, the doctors, and the Facebook users (Ps 127:1). Unless God watches, the watchman watches in vain. In Psalm 40:1-3, King David calls us to place our hope in God. He writes,
I waited patiently for the Lord; he inclined to me and heard my cry. He drew me up from the pit of destruction, out of the miry bog, and set my feet upon a rock, making my steps secure. He put a new song in my mouth, a song of praise to our God. Many will see and fear, and put their trust in the Lord.Psalm 40:1-3
David stood on the brink of destruction as he sank in the quicksand of life without access to a branch or rope. All seemed hopeless for David. Yet he did not lose hope and reach out for the hand of prideful men who employed self-centered lies to advance their own cause at the expense of the hurting (Ps 40:4). He did not place his hope in technology or in any other person under earth. He cried to the Lord and waited for God. Though the world mocked David as he sank closer and closer to destruction, help did come. God pulled David from the pit and set him upon the rock of truth. Blessings returned to David’s life and songs of praise filled David’s lungs.
If you feel stuck in the mud of depression, discouragement, and pain, I encourage you to follow David. Wait upon the Lord. Let’s put down our phones, turn off the computer, and put the tablet to sleep and devote the time once given to worry to prayer. Let’s pray and then do the hard work of waiting.
Faith consists of asking, waiting, and asking again, believing that God’s past actions of salvation ensure his future work. David notes, God will never restrain his mercy (Ps 40:11). He will hear and he will act. He will sustain us by his steadfast love. Those who wait upon the Lord never experience disappointment.
If bitterness fills your mouth, cry out to God for salvation. If depression has stained your lips, cry out to God for salvation. If your mouth aches from the injustices of this world, cry out to God for salvation. Though hours, days, and years may pass, God will save you from the pit. You will praise the Lord again. God will put a new song in your mouth. “Blessed is the man who makes the Lord his trust (Ps 40:5).”
How goes prayering and the waiting?