Word for the day by Christian Education Forum
THE CURE OF DISTRESS
Do not hide your face from me when I am in distress. Turn your ear to me; when I call, answer me quickly. (Psalms 102:2)Psalm 102 reveals the importance of prayer and having a personal relationship with Christ. Whenever we are worried and troubled about life and everything in this world, let us remember the God of creation. Because God is living, eternal and unchanging, we can trust Him to help His people in this generation just as He helped His people in past generations. It also reveals the importance of prayer. The psalmist describes his fever, his frailty, his pain, his loneliness, his sleeplessness, and his rejection and sorrow.
God is our strength in times of distress: In vs. 1-11, the psalmist prays to God in his distress and he describes his illness. He feels so bad that he forgets to eat. When we face sickness and despair, we forget at times to take care of ourselves, even our basic needs. But we must remember that God alone is our comfort and strength. And when we are too weak to fight, we can always lean on Him for He is strong. Perhaps the psalmist is trying to explain to himself that God will not hide His face when he is in distress. Many times in our lives we feel that God does not understand our problems and He is turning away from us. But in these moments we must remember that the God who created us in His own image knows our very being. He knows our thoughts, He knows our struggles and problems, He knows our happiness, and is with us through it all. At times we need to be alone and being in solitude may bring us comfort.
God holds our future: In vs. 12-22, the psalmist finds his confidence in the sovereign purpose of the Lord and says that God will rebuild and restore Jerusalem (Zion) again and the entire world will worship the Lord. Verse 17 says that god will answer His people’s prayers. Verse 16 says that the Lord will rebuild Zion and show everyone His glory. Verse 15 says that all the nations and kings will kneel before the Lord. God has always kept His promise in the past and we must believe that He will keep His promise in the future that Christ will come again and Jerusalem will be restored. In vs. 22-28, the psalmist says that he will die but God will live on forever and will never die. The psalmist felt rejected and tossed aside because of his great troubles. Problems and heartaches can overwhelm us and cause us to feel that God has rejected us. But God our Creator is eternally with us and will keep all His promises, even when we feel alone. The world will perish but God will remain.
Prayer: Lord, help us to experience you more intimately, especially in times of our distress. Amen
Elizabeth Abraham, St. Thomas MTC, NY