The Daily Office: Day 38- The Antidote to Despair
Silence for 2-5 minutes:
If your mind wanders, silently pray a simple prayer again and again, such as, "I surrender to your love" or "Jesus, son of David, have mercy on me" until the Holy Spirit gives you a sense of peace and focus.
7 Hear, O Lord, when I cry with my voice, And be gracious to me and answer me. 8 When You said, “Seek My face,” my heart said to You, “Your face, O Lord, I shall seek.” 9 Do not hide Your face from me, Do not turn Your servant away in anger; You have been my help; Do not abandon me nor forsake me, O God of my salvation! 10 For my father and my mother have forsaken me, But the Lord will take me up.
11 Teach me Your way, O Lord, And lead me in a level path Because of my foes. 12 Do not deliver me over to the desire of my adversaries, For false witnesses have risen against me, And such as breathe out violence. 13 I would have despaired unless I had believed that I would see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. 14 Wait for the Lord; Be strong and let your heart take courage; Yes, wait for the Lord.
David believes that God will act in His life here and now displaying divine goodness in a multitude of ways. David says that if he did not believe this truth and act accordingly, he would live a life of despair. I think this man after God’s own heart is saying something utterly important. Believers are in despair today because they have essentially become “deists.” A deist believes that God exists and is the creator, but then God essentially lets the world that He established function on its own without any intervention. I know many believers who cannot point to one specific answered prayer in their lives or any concrete direction received from the Holy Spirit. This is a life of despair!
David, then tells us the key to seeing the goodness of God displayed in his life; seeking the face of God, and waiting. Seeking God’s face means to above all else, long for and pursue an intimate fellowship with God. This is the one objective that David chases with abandon. Through this action, David’s soul is flooded with the goodness of God as the king delights in the Lord’s presence. Secondly, David waits on the Lord. Waiting is an essential aspect of our walking with God. Waiting purifies the heart and rids us of making the gifts and blessings of God into idols. Think of how long Abraham waited for the promise of a son. Think of how long the Israelites waited to be delivered from Egyptian slavery. Think of how long the earth waited for the Savior to be born. In each instance, God was faithful to His word, but the waiting period was used by God to prepare, refine, and make wise.
Recount times where you have seen the goodness of God in the land of the living? Give thanks to the Lord for His proven faithfulness in your life.
Ask the Lord to make you strong and courageous as you wait for God to answer the most pressing need of your life.
O Lord, help me to realize that you are moving in my life each and every day. A life without you acting in goodness toward me would be a life of total despair. Help me to seek your face and wait for you knowing that you are faithful to your promises. Amen!