Ep.073: Psalm 28: Desperation and Deliverance.

Hello, I’m Daniel Westfall on the channel “Pray with Me”.

Psalm 28 is a simple, classic psalm. It has nine verses. The first five are a cry for help. The last four give thanks for God’s help and deliverance. As usual in psalms of this type, the poet gives no clue about the event or experience that turned his desperate cry for help into grateful confidence.

Let’s pray some phrases from this psalm. 

To you, Lord, I call;
  you are my rock,
  do not turn a deaf ear to me.
For if you remain silent,
  I will be like those who go down to the pit (v. 1).

Lord, we have been in the pit and we do not want to go there again. A pit of depression, where our world is formless and dark. A pit of hopelessness, where life has no meaning. A pit of lethargy, where our efforts are futile. A pit of pain, where live in broken relationships. 

O Lord, when you are silent, we feel our feet slipping at the edge of the pit, we feel our heart hardening into fear, we feel our mind flirting with insanity. O Lord, be our rock, hear and answer us before we fall into darkness and chaos. 

As the poet says,
    Do not drag me away with the wicked,
   with those who do evil, 
who speak friendly words,
  that hide a heart of malice.
Repay them for what they have done,
  Give them what they deserve
Tear them down
    and never build them up again (vv. 3-4).

Lord, in the United States, the police handcuff perpetrators and march them past TV cameras on the way to court. O Lord, don’t make us do the perp-walk, don’t drag us away with the wicked, don’t send us in handcuffs to be judged. 

The wicked hide malicious hearts behind friendly words and smiles. Help us to see through their facade, help us identify the self-promoting televangelists, the dishonest telemarketers, the preachers greedy for their own glory. Help us resist those who try to control us with manipulation, fear, deceit. They have no regard for your work . Lord, we regard your work. You have taught us to wash our hands and cleanse our hearts and come to you in prayer and praise. Help us resist those who entice us back to our eating disorders and shopping obsessions and feelings of entitlement, greed and anger.

As the poet prayed,
    Praise be to the Lord, 
  for he has heard my cry for mercy.
The Lord is my strength and my shield,
  my heart trusts in him and he helps me.
My heart leaps for joy
  and I praise him in song (vv. 6-7).

O Lord, you have come to us as light dispersing our darkness. You have come as strength, enabling us to resist our fatal attractions. You have come as a shield, protecting from the evils that tempt us. You come as a rock of salvation, and our slipping feet at last stand firm. 

We sing to you songs of praise. You fill our hearts with joy and hope. We lift our hands, we shout your name, we trample the forces of evil. 

As the psalm says,
    The Lord is the strength of his people,
        a fortress of salvation for his anointed one.
    Save your people and bless their inheritance,
      Be their shepherd and carry them forever (vv. 8-9). 

Yes, Lord, be our strength. Rescue us, bless our inheritance, carry us in your heart, and be our shepherd forever.

Amen.

I’m Daniel on the channel “Pray with Me”.        

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