Word for the day by Christian Education Forum
FORSAKE ME NOT O LORD
Verse From birth I have relied on you; you brought me forth from my mother’s womb. I will ever praise you. I have become a sign to many; you are my strong refuge. (Psalm 71:6-7)
Psalm 71 is recognized as a prayer for God’s help and it is viewed as an anxious cry of King David in his old age when enemies threaten him and his strength is fading. It is also a confident confession of hope, and a vow to praise God in anticipation of His deliverance.
Anxiety a grave disease that destroys the whole person: Human beings have the tendency to get anxious – anxious that something unpleasant is going to happen. We may have heard that ‘anxiety is not just worry, it is needless worry’ and that ‘anxiety is worry that is looking for a cause, rather than arising from a cause’. It drives personalities to become weak and feel threatened. It has the potential to destroy relationships as well as the individual. To overcome anxiety, society has either developed chemicals to calm it or developed psychological approaches for coming to terms with it. It is not a taboo to seek such interventions and remedies, which are important for restoring the well being of the anxious individual as well as the community they live in.
Hope a powerful panacea for renewal of life: The Psalmist appears to expect something ominous when saying, “I have become like a portent to many.” However, although none of his troubles are specified, he shares the robust faith that all things are in the hands of the one sovereign God, the God to whom he turns in prayer. He is confident that the One who gave him life will preserve and renew his life. His hope is an attitude to the future. It is built on past experience, just like a farmer who exemplifies hope when he sows his seeds onto the ground. If the farmer did not have past experience that the seeds would sprout and yield a plentiful crop he would sow nothing. Likewise, the children of God are called to live in the hope that God is our ‘strong refuge’ because we can vouch that He has carried us safely through our past difficulties. Every person with faith in God should view their real troubles of life as significant opportunities to experience God’s marvelous ways of challenging their faith, and demonstrating His glory.
We live in challenging times. There will be times when we feel that the whole world is against us and that even God may have forsaken us. In such times, all we have to do is look back and pray with confidence.
Prayer: Dear Lord, do not forsake me. I am a sinner and depend on your mercy and forgiveness. Be with me as my strong refuge. Bless me. Let your right hand guide me in everything I do. Let everything I do be in accordance with your will. Amen.
Dr. Mathew Thomas (T),
Mar Thoma Church of Greater Washington