“Hear my prayer, O Lord; Let my cry for help come to you.
Do not hide your face from me when I am in distress.
Turn your ear to me; when I call, answer me quickly.
For my days vanish like smoke; my bones burn like glowing embers.
My heart is sick and withered like grass;” (vv.1-4)
“My days are like the evening shadow;
I wither away like grass.” (v.11)
One of the most difficult places to find oneself is in what we might refer to as a “Desert Place” where life seems to all but stop as you lose hope, peace, and motivation accompanied by the fact that taking each step further becomes more challenging day by day. Here we find the Psalmist in such a Desert Season in his own life where he’s calling out to God for help, “Hear my prayer, O Lord; Let my cry for help come to you. Do not hide your face from me when I am in distress. Turn your ear to me; when I call, answer me quickly.” He’s calling out as if he feels he can’t hold on much longer under the conditions he describes, “For my days vanish like smoke; my bones burn like glowing embers. My heart is sick and withered like grass; My days are like the evening shadow; I wither away like grass.”
It is most difficult when we enter such seasons with cumulative days or weeks of lowliness, depression, anxiety, or hopelessness which simply linger. In addition to these struggles, further frustration may result as such occasions do not always provide definitive answers to the direct cause of our internal suffering or pain – it’s just there. Our days can seem to run together as the Psalmist says, “vanishing like smoke,” and our “heart may feel sick and withered like grass” as our body experiences fatigue from the daily battle. Finally, at the end of each day in a season such as this, we can all too often feel as if a “shadow” looms over us as again we are as “withered grass” tossed by the winds of a challenging and reoccurring struggle from within. However, in these times we must follow the example of the Psalmist and call out to the Lord for help, inviting Him into our circumstances as we find ourselves in these Desert Places. Traveling through these dry seasons can cause us not to see God clearly nor feel His presence, but in His perfect timing He reveals to us that He had been there carrying us all the time. It may appear that God is silent for a time, but in the words of Corrie Ten Boom, “Sometimes the silence of the Lord is His way of letting us grow.” When it does seem that God is “silent,” remember that He is never absent from us, but rather is always with us as He has promised.
Connecting Faith & Life:
Father, thank You for this day You have made, may we find true joy, peace, and rest in You. You are the One ever-present companion even in the desert places of our lives when our souls feel weary, withered, and worn. When we experience seasons of dryness which can produce depression, anxiety, hopelessness, and confusion – let us not become disillusioned if You are silent but for a time, instead help us to cry out to you in utter dependence. For this type of dependence is not a sign of weakness, but rather a demonstration of faith in Your promises to meet us right in the midst of our circumstances. May seeking You first become our default setting and not our last resort. In Jesus’ name I pray. Amen.