When life becomes overwhelming, it is essential to regain a sense of God’s control over the details. At these times, I often glance through the psalms and review the promises found in scripture. A significant number of them remind me that worry, distress, anger, fear, and frustration etc. are not new. The writers of these ancient words took their emotions to God. In the lament psalms, every one of them (except Ps. 88) has a turning point in which the writer realizes that God alone offers hope and they often review His past faithfulness to increase faith for the present. As you glance through these words, allow God to encourage and comfort your point of pain.
One of my favorites is Psalm 18. Consider these words of expressed despair…and hope (and read the entire Psalm for its full effect)
The cords of death encompassed me; the torrents of destruction assailed me; the cords of Sheol entangled me;
the snares of death confronted me. In my distress I called upon the LORD; to my God I cried for help. From his temple he heard my voice, and my cry to him reached his ears…
…He sent from on high, he took me; he drew me out of many waters. He rescued me from my strong enemy and from those who hated me, for they were too mighty for me. They confronted me in the day of my calamity, but the LORD was my support. He brought me out into a broad place; he rescued me, because he delighted in me.
Ps 18:4–6; 16–19. (ESV)
God’s word never fails to uplift me when I most need to hear from my heavenly Father. What a great gift we have in Scripture.