I cried out to God for help; I cried out to God to hear me. When I was in distress, I sought the Lord; at night I stretched out untiring hands and my soul refused to be comforted. I remembered you, O God, and I groaned; I mused, and my spirit grew faint. Selah You kept my eyes from closing; I was too troubled to speak. I thought about the former days, the years of long ago; I remembered my songs in the night. My heart mused and my spirit inquired: “Will the Lord reject forever? Will he never show his favor again? Has his unfailing love vanished forever? Has his promise failed for all time? Has God forgotten to be merciful? Has he in anger withheld his compassion?” Selah Then I thought, “To this I will appeal: the years of the right hand of the Most High.” I will remember the deeds of the LORD; yes, I will remember your miracles of long ago. I will meditate on all your works and consider all your mighty deeds. Your ways, O God, are holy. What god is so great as our God? You are the God who performs miracles; you display your power among the peoples. With your mighty arm you redeemed your people, the descendants of Jacob and Joseph. Selah The waters saw you, O God, the waters saw you and writhed; the very depths were convulsed. The clouds poured down water, the skies resounded with thunder; your arrows flashed back and forth. Your thunder was heard in the whirlwind, your lightning lit up the world; the earth trembled and quaked. Your path led through the sea, your way through the mighty waters, though your footprints were not seen. You led your people like a flock by the hand of Moses and Aaron. (NIV)
What actions do you take when everything around you seems to be falling apart? In this psalm Asaph cries out to the Lord. Whatever the situation might have been it seemed to him that the Lord had abandon him. Look at the questions he states in his prayer:
Will the Lord reject forever?
Will he never show his favor again? Has his unfailing love vanished forever?
Has his promise failed for all time? Has God forgotten to be merciful?
Has he in anger withheld his compassion?
I have also asked these questions before God. One thing I have realized as I have age is that there will be hard and difficult times in life. Many of us will face issues that many of the Old Testament saints faced in their life. This psalm gives us the answers to these times and to the questions above. The first step is to mediate on the things God has done “Then I thought”. In this mediation we must make our appeals directly to God “To this I will appeal: the years of the right hand of the Most High”. I must remember the deeds of the Lord. I look back and the focus usually starts with how God has been moving in my life.