Holed up in a cave, hiding from a vengeful king, David found himself overwhelmed with uncertainty and despair. (If you read the book of First Samuel, you will find that David fled to the caves on more than one occasion.) In this time of trial and persecution and desperation, what did David do?
Psalm 142 records the content of David’s prayer from the cave. In this psalm, David poured out his complaint and his trouble before God. He agonized over his aloneness and the continued danger from King Saul. Like us, he had a few things that he wanted resolved.
But David did not stop there.
- David acknowledged God’s understanding of his predicament (verse 3). Even though the path was hard, David was assured that God knew the circumstances he faced.
- David claimed God as his refuge, or place of safety (verse 5). David was in danger, but he still knew that God was his safe place.
- David claimed God as his portion (verse 5). Though David had been anointed King of Israel, he could not take his rightful place because of Saul. David did not claim the throne as his portion; he claimed God as his portion. In doing that he submitted to whatever God had for him.
- David looked forward to God’s deliverance (verse 7). David planned ahead of time to praise God for the deliverance that He would accomplish. His faith was in God.
- David focused his heart on God’s bountiful care (verse 7). David was in trouble, but his heart was focused on God’s care. He could rest there.
I can learn from David’s prayer.
- Like David, sometimes I feel alone, dismayed, even frightened at the prospects ahead. God understands. I am His child, and he is not shaken when I carry my complaints and difficulties to Him. It helps just to know that He cares.
- No matter what is going on in this world, God IS my refuge. I can go to Him. I can hide my heart in His love.
- Knowing that God is my portion keeps me from depending on this world to meet all my needs. The God of the Universe holds me, and that is enough.
- Times may be difficult now, but deliverance is coming. God will keep His promises. My hope is in Him.
- David focused on God’s bountiful care. I can, too. My situation may not be what I want right now, but God is still caring for and providing for me. Thanking Him for daily grace keeps gratitude as my attitude.
Sometimes we want to think that the world has never been this bad before, but God’s people have always suffered trials and persecutions. We are no exception. God’s grace is sufficient to carry us through times of uncertainty and horror.
We can go to Him in prayer, and we, like David, can say with confidence, “He is my refuge and my portion.”
Don’t allow the darkness of the world to dim the light of His grace in your heart. Pray like David. He kept David; He keeps His children today as well.
Psalm 73:26 My flesh and my heart faileth: but God is the strength of my heart, and my portion for ever.
Photo – Evening Promise, Beth Mims