“Hear my prayer, O Lord; let my cry come to you!”
Hurts and brokenness among the chosen people of God is nothing new. While there is much more attention given to church worker health, the anguish of God’s servants fills the Psalms. Psalm 102 begins with a preface that notes, “A Prayer of one afflicted, when he is faint and pours out his complaint before the Lord.” How often we all have bowed knees and heads when faint and poured out our complaints to God? The prayers of the saints today may be uttered in the midst of a cacophony of sounds and distractions. However, our cries still flow from the hearts of those who are afflicted and faint. From the constant demands of our respective vocations to the harrowing influence of our culture to the hardness of our own hearts, Christians still cry out to God for rescue and deliverance.
One of the favorite pieces of furniture that I come across in pastor’s studies is a prie dieu (kneeler). They are often well worn from the times in which the afflicted one pours out his complaint to the Lord. Whether your complaints are poured out from your knees or while driving, the Psalms are full of the laments of those overwhelmed by the pressures of life in a fallen world. Regardless of one’s posture of prayer, the saints of God are blessed to be able to cry out to God in every time of trial and tribulation.
The true comfort is not simply that we can pray to God, but that He has promised to hear our prayers. Later in this same psalm, we pray, “[H]e regards the prayer of the destitute and does not despise their prayer.” (102:17) For we have all felt afflicted and destitute, yet God does not treat as our sins deserve, but mercifully hears our prayers. For hurting servants, it is a source of great comfort and joy to know that God does not abandon us, but hears and has regard for our prayers.
You are not the first hurting servant. But knowing that God is hears our prayers for Jesus’ sake is an integral part of the faith of healthy servants. Wherever you pray, be in on a prie dieu or in a favorite chair, go there often! And when you pray, know that when you are faint, that the Lord has regard for you and hears your prayers.
Prayer – Almighty God, You have promised to hear the petitions of those who ask in Your Son’s name. Mercifully incline Your ears to us who have now made our prayers and supplications to You, and grant that those things we have faithfully asked according to Your will, we may receive to meet our need and bring glory to You; through Jesus Christ, our Lord. Amen.
Fraternally in Christ,
President Lee Hagan