Ansell: Our hearts 'rejoice' as we're faithful in hard circumstances

KEN ANSELL

There might be times we wonder if God like Elvis has left the building.  That’s about what’s going on in Psalm 13.  In this Psalm the writer asks, “How long, O Lord?  Will You forget me forever?  How long will you hide your face from me?  How long must I have … sorrow in my heart all the day?  How long shall my enemy be exalted over me (verses 1 & 2)?”  Anybody else?  

It’s good that we can come to the Lord sharing our problems.  It’s not only good, it's Biblical.  In Philippians 4:6 we are told to bring our “definite requests” to God.  There is a shift in verse 3 from problems to petitions.  The writer thinks God is hiding from him so he asks the Lord to “Look” at him, to “Consider” him, his load is heavy and he needs help or he will slip and fall, this person is anxious and desperately needs help that only the Lord can give. 

Ken Ansell

This reminds me of Jabez in 1st Chronicles 4:10.  Jabez prayed that God’s hand would be on him.  In other words, we reach places that we need what only God can do in our lives. Years ago I confessed and repented of being too big for my spiritual britches. No doubt we have all taken too much credit for the great things that God does and I told Abba Father, “I have gone as far as my flesh will take me, Lord, I’m sorry and from this day forward I am going to be dependent on you.  I need your supernatural power in my life.” Like Jabez, “that your hand might be with me,”

It's amazing like Dr. Seuss told us in his book "Oh The Places You’ll Go!": “You’re off to great places, today is your day!  Your mountain is waiting, so … get on your way!”  We will see great things and go great places when we stop relying on ourselves and trusting in the Lord.  Oh the places God will take us.  

Finally starting in verse 5 there is praise.  “But I have trusted in your steadfast love; my heart shall rejoice … I will sing to the Lord, because He has dealt bountifully with me.”  I like this guy because he does not give up. We call this faith. Trust and love prevails!  Our hearts “rejoice” as we are faithful in hard circumstances. We are overwhelmed with joy, and it expresses itself in praise! Again, verse 6 says, “I will sing to the Lord, for He has been good to me.” There is power in praise. It’s hard to pout when you are praising God. They say gratitude is the key to joy, and joy needs an outlet, and that outlet is praise.

When we find ourselves at the cross streets of trouble and faith, we need to always choose the path of faith. Faith will cause us to be honest with God (verses 1 & 2) and it is faith that will compel us to ask God (verses 3 & 4) for help (more like HELP!!), and faith that will create praise in our hearts (verse 5 & 6).  Go ahead be real, be human but be His. Oh the places you will go! He told me to tell you that.