READING: 1 Chronicles 1-2, Psalm 43-44
“Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my salvation and my God.”
Sometimes it’s easy to let the circumstances of life trump the depth of our faith. We know what we’re supposed to say—and we might even try to preach to ourselves—but the words sound hollow to us. We want to believe, but the best we can do is cry out with the father in Mark 9, “Lord, I believe. Help my unbelief!” Then, we recognize the struggle of our faith and seek to trust the Lord again. The battle sometimes becomes an ongoing one when the circumstances don’t change quickly.
The psalmist seems to have felt that way as he lamented some situation in Psalms 42 and 43. Whatever he was facing, he seemed to be dealing with enemies who somehow hindered his being at the sanctuary to worship – and he longed to be there. Even when it felt to him like God wasn’t hearing him, though, the psalmist pushed himself to trust. In fact, he questioned within himself, “Why do I go about mourning because of the oppression of the enemy?” (Psa. 43:2) and “Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me?” (Psa. 43:5). Those words may well have described his questioning heart, but he also knew that trust meant he must respond differently. His refrain of these psalms, “Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my salvation and my God” (Psa. 43:5), would then become the refrain of his heart.
The words of the psalmist’s refrains are words I need to remember when I’m struggling. I don’t need to let my soul get down; I need to keep hoping in the Lord. I will indeed praise Him again.
- Ask yourself this kind of question as a matter of self-reflection: “Why do I ______________ when I should just be trusting the Lord?”
- As much as you need to today, remind yourself to trust and hope in the Lord.
PRAYER: “Lord, I still hope in You regardless of what I face today.”
TOMORROW’S READING: Psalms 49, 84, 85, 87