In this week’s message, we look at the final part of Psalm 139. In it, David makes his main request to the Lord which reminds us that we are always heard. His prayer offers us a kind of template or pattern we might find helpful in our own prayers to the Lord, especially when life is at its most difficult.
David first offers a desperate plea. It’s ok to cry out to God when we feel hopeless, helpless, or like we just don’t understand what’s going on. We’re in good company when we do so; the Bible contains numerous psalms of lament or complaint that represent the cries of God’s people in difficult circumstances. Lament is powerful in that it places the whole of who we are before the Lord in transparency and vulnerability, confesses that we lack the power or wisdom that only God possesses, can help cleanse us of negative thoughts or feelings, and can create a posture of renewed openness to the Lord.
Next, David offers a declaration of faith to the Lord. In the midst of his trial (attack from enemies) he reaffirms his dedication to the Lord alone, that he is standing in the right place. Declaring our faith in the Lord, TO the Lord has the power to renew or refresh our understanding of who He is, anchor our hope in his grace, power, and wisdom instead of in ourselves, and keeps us from looking to ‘lesser gods’ to meet our needs.
Finally, David declares his decision to trust in the Lord to lead him forward. In doing so, he invites the Lord’s ongoing ‘searching’ of his heart and life, any correction he might need, and the Lord’s leading into eternity. Our decision to move forward in trust invites those same things from the Lord.