S (Scripture): Psalm 143
Listen to my prayer, Lord!
Because of your faithfulness, hear my requests for mercy!
Because of your righteousness, answer me!
Please don’t bring your servant to judgment,
because no living thing is righteous before you.
The enemy is chasing me,
crushing my life in the dirt,
forcing me to live in the dark
like those who’ve been dead forever.
My spirit is weak inside me—
inside, my mind is numb.
I remember the days long past;
I meditate on all your deeds;
I contemplate your handiwork.
I stretch out my hands to you;
my whole being is like dry dirt, thirsting for you.
O (Observation): The author is in the midst of a most difficult circumstance. They realize their lack of control over the outside circumstances, and life is dry and numb.
Does this mean the author is not faithful? Does this mean the author doubts? Does this mean the author was unfaithful and caused this harm to himself or herself?
A (Application): So often, we think that blessings come in good times when we are faithful, and bad things happen when we are unfaithful. That correlation cannot be more wrong.
Sometimes, faithful folks encounter difficult times and good things happen to us when we are doubting God and others.
The psalmist gives us space to be in the midst of difficult circumstances and still feel like God is still present. Even though things aren’t going our way, we can still trust in God to be with us and walk us through the challenges.
This can look like a friend being with us, or a pot of soup being brought over on a cold day.
Be on the lookout for signs of God showing up where we least expect. Especially in our times of challenge.
P (Prayer): God, we are challenged, but looking for you. Amen.