A reflection on Psalm 13

Are we there yet? – These words are familiar to all who have ventured on a long road trip. The Psalmist felt the same way about a situation with no end in sight. Somehow his attention shifts and he expresses confidence in God; who’s at the wheel. What happened? Why the shift?

Psalm 13 begins with this lament:

I’m hurting, Lord—will you forget me forever?
How much longer, Lord?
Will you look the other way when I’m in need?

How much longer must I cling to this constant grief?
I’ve endured this shaking of my soul.
So how much longer will my enemy have the upper hand?
It’s been long enough!

Have you ever felt like, God is this turmoil ever going to end? I’m so tired of the constant harassment, the never-ending assault.  If there’s any consolation, you are not alone. How do you move beyond, how much longer?

Rehearse what’s true about God.

Lord, I have always trusted in your kindness… (v5)

What has God already done in your life? Place your confidence in the character and nature of God. The God who has come through for you in the past, will do it again

Declare  There is a point where faith makes a declaration based on who God is, what God has done and what God has promised.

In the face of lingering adversity, the Psalmist makes this declaration:

I will yet celebrate with passion and joy
    when your salvation lifts me up.  (emphasis mine)

On March 1st, 1990  Joy and I, along with her parents joined hands to pray in our living room. After battling infertility for over a decade, Joy was pregnant! However, our euphoria turned to grief when we discovered that the pregnancy was ectopic. We were headed to the hospital for surgery. As we stood to pray, something arose in me. Out of my mouth came these words: This is not the final chapter. We will see the goodness of God. We will hold a baby in our arms. Faith declares; not what is seen, but what is unseen. Kirsten was born on March 1st, 1992 – two years to the day of our loss. 

What are you declaring over your situation?

Wait    Faith that declares, is also tested by time. James, the brother of Jesus expressed it this way:

Count it all joy, my brothers, when you meet trials of various kinds,for you know that the testing of your faith produces steadfastness. And let steadfastness have its full effect, that you may be perfect and complete, lacking in nothing. (James 1:2-5)

Our bundle of joy came years later. During that time God was at work in us — growing us, strengthening us.

The Psalmist ends his song on an upbeat note:

I will sing my song of joy to you, the Most High,
for in all of this you have strengthened my soul.
My enemies say that I have no Savior,
but I know that I have one in you!

How much longer? I don’t know. As you rehearse what God has done in your life, and as you declare who God is, may there be a shift in your soul. Wait in expectation for God — who works all things together for good to those who love him. (Romans 8:28)

Take courage my heart
Stay steadfast my soul
He’s in the waiting
He’s in the waiting
Hold onto your hope
As your triumph unfolds
He’s never failing
He’s never failing

Kristene DiMarco