Life is hard and it seems to keep getting harder for our family! Due to my health condition, my husband is forced to work a job with low pay and bad hours. He had the chance to lead a mission trip overseas, but he has been denied the time off because it falls during the company’s peak sales season.
It is easy when dealing with chronic illness to “[think] about the former days” (v. 5) that were so much better in comparison to the present hardships and wonder, “will [God] never show His favor again?” (v.7). I have often said to my husband, “I understand the Bible says this life will be hard, but why does it have to be so hard?!”
What do we do when we, like the psalmist, have prayed, but it seems like God doesn’t intervene and we continue to suffer? How can we keep our spirit from growing faint?
After lamenting over his suffering, the psalmist purposefully begins to remember God’s hand at work in years past (v 10-20). It’s like all of a sudden the psalmist stops throwing himself a pity party and says, “Yes, life is hard, but I am going to meditate on how faithful You have been to Your people, God”.
He remembers Joseph, and how through many hardships God used him to redeem His people. He is encouraged by Moses, the great exodus, and God’s guidance through the desert for 40 years. And He is awed by God’s majesty and power in the parting of the Red Sea.
We must make a conscious effort as well not to sit around feeling sorry for ourselves and instead meditate on what is true. Sure, life has been hard and things may only get harder in this life, but “What god is so great as our God?”
Prayer: God help me to focus on what is true; that you really are great! Help me to praise You even when I don’t feel like I can praise you anymore.
About the Author:
Kari is a young wife and mother of a busy toddler. After ministering to those suffering from HIV/AIDS and living in Africa she is learning personally that pain has a purpose.
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How do you keep your spirit from growing faint despite living with a chronic illness? What are some practical ways we can take our minds off ourselves and focus on the truth even when we don’t want to? For example, my husband gave me small cards with things such as names of friends, qualities I want in my life (love, joy, etc), and missionaries to pray and praise God for so when I became worried I could pull out those cards and focus my mind on the things of Philippians 4:8.