Life is a struggle sometimes. Prayer can be a struggle. It doesn’t have to be. When prayer seems hard I turn to the Psalms. I’ve done that for nearly 30 years since I was a young single man living far from home in a foreign land and the Psalms have led me closer to God. Through centuries and millenia God’s people have used the Psalms to express their cries to him. I shared the following psalm (143) last Sunday with my family a day after my oldest son left home and landed on the other side of the world and now I’m sharing it with you.
1 Yahweh hear my prayer. Give ear to my requests. In your faithfulness and your righteousness answer me!
2 Do not enter into judgment of your servant, for no one living can be upright before you.
3 For the enemy pursues me and crushes me to the ground. He makes me dwell in darkness like those who are long dead.
4 So my spirit is overwhelmed inside me and my heart is desolate within.
5 I remember the days of old. I meditate on all you’ve done. I mull over the works of your hand.
6 I stretch forth my hands to you, my soul is like a thirsty land. Selah.
7 Hear me quickly Yahweh—my spirit fails. Do not hide your face from me, lest I be like those who go down to the pit.
8 Make me hear in the morning of your steadfast love, for in you I trust, help me know the way to walk in, for to you I lift up my soul.
9 Deliver me from my enemies, Yahweh, I flee to you.
10 Teach me to do your will, for you are my God. Let your good Spirit lead me on level ground.
11 On account of your name, Yahweh, revive me; in your righteousness bring me out of trouble.
12 In your covenant love cut off my enemies and destroy all those hostile opponents of my soul, for I am your servant.
What to do now:
Pick a word – “meditate”, “trust”, “teach me”, “revive”, “hear!”, “deliver me” and repeat it today, meditate on it, make it your one word prayer throughout the day.
Listen to the podcast of this psalm