8/21/12 – Giving Up
Have you ever felt like just giving up? Chances are that at some point in your life you've faced hardships or disappointments that made you feel like just throwing in the towel. If any of those times in your life stretched on for months or even years, then you can relate to the feeling of being on an emotional roller coaster. One day, you wake up and feel ready for the challenges. Nothing can bring you down. This trial can only last so long, right? You've got this! But then you wake up the next day and there's more bad news to face, more bills in the mailbox, another broken appliance, another child needing to go to the doctor, another bad test result. On those days, you just want to throw up your hands and yell, “I've had enough!”
David, in the book of Psalms, puts these feelings into words beautifully. “How long, O Lord? Will you forget me forever? How long will you hide your face from me? How long will I wrestle with my thoughts and every day have sorrow in my heart? How long will my enemy triumph over me? Look on me and answer, O Lord my God. Give light to my eyes, or I will sleep in death;” (Psalm 13:1-3) It sounds like David was definitely on the low end of the roller coaster ride when he penned these words, doesn't it? He obviously felt like giving up. But, he didn't give up. Instead he poured out his heart to the God he knew could bring him through. The God who had promised him that he would one day be king. The God who promises all of us that He will never leave us nor forsake us. (Psalm 27:10; Hebrews 13:5)
After pouring out his heart to God, holding nothing back, David ends this prayer with a beautiful statement of faith including his resolve to praise God for His goodness. “But I trust in your unfailing love; my heart rejoices in your salvation. I will sing to the Lord, for he has been good to me.” (Psalm 13:5-6) It would be fun to know how long it took David to write this Psalm. Was it written all at once, or did it take him some time? I know I have some journal entries that run a lot like this prayer. I come to God with questions and fears and He slowly, but surely draws me back to the truth of His word and the power of His promises. Sometimes this transformation of my attitude can take 10 minutes, other times an hour. Sometimes I leave my devotional time without feeling much better, but with at least a much better mindset. Off course, that change in mindset slowly works it's way into how I feel, but there are times when my heart can be pretty stubborn!
So, the next time you're at the bottom of your roller coaster ride, remember your heavenly Father wants you to know He's right there with you. He feels your every pain and wants to help you through it. He never rejoices in our pain, He grieves with us and wants what's best for us. He has promised to never leave us or forsake us.