“He shall regard the prayer of the destitute, and shall not despise their prayer.”
Sometimes the Psalms come with titles that give insight into the situation that stirred the author to write. In his case, we are not given the details of his life circumstances, but are told of the purpose behind this song. He writes,
“A Prayer of the afflicted, when he is overwhelmed and pours out his complaint before the Lord.”
Affliction is designed by God to drive us to Him, that we might receive His mercy and find the necessary comfort. Sadly, that is not always the way we react to difficulties. I recently attended an event where a group of people gathered in response to a tragedy that affected all of them. While I understand that difficulty often causes our emotions to speak for us, I was stunned by much of what I heard. Instead of realizing our mutual weakness and need for the mercy of God, I heard person after person speak of how they would not allow this tragedy to break them or to change them. It is as though, the hardship they faced gave them greater resolve and increased resistance against the Lord.
I do not think this was an isolated incident. In fact, in the final years of Judah, the people expressed this same stubborn rebellion against God. While the Babylonians conquered their land and began taking the children into captivity, we read of the leaders continuing with their wicked lifestyles. Instead of allowing the common tragedy to break them, they determined to stand strong in their opposition to God. It is as if they were saying, “You can’t break us and we will never bend.”
Perhaps you are facing a difficult season. Please keep in mind, that part of the reason for this hardship is to bring you to your knees, where you would allow the affliction you are facing, cause you to cry out to the Lord for His mercy.
Questions for Psalm 102
- The Psalmist is writing in a state of distress and is overwhelmed with trouble. He even loses his appetite in verse 4. When you’re in the same condition are you pouring your complaint before the Lord?
- In verses 6-7, the Psalmist compares himself to a lonely bird, a pelican of the wilderness, an owl of the desert and a sparrow alone on a housetop. In times of loneliness do you seek fellowship? Turn to Psalm 133 and read about God telling us how good and pleasant it is to be in fellowship.
- As you read this Psalm from verses 8-28, you might be going through this or dealing with that, but one of these days we’re going HOME, AMEN!
- In verse 26 the Psalmist says “They will perish, but You will endure.” Jesus said, “Heaven and earth will pass away, but My Words will by no means pass away” Matthew 24:35. What are you building your life upon? Be encouraged; build it on the Lord, because He’s the only one who is sure.