David’s prayer began: “How long, O Lord? Will you forget me forever? How long will you hide your face from me (Psalm 13:1)?”
Though he still waited for God to answer, his prayer ended: “I have trusted in your steadfast love; my heart shall rejoice in your salvation. I will sing to the Lord, because he has dealt bountifully with me (Psalm 13:5-6).
Pray with cheerful expectation.
The heavens declare the glory of God (Psalm 19:1).
We can too. Declare his glory among the nations, his marvelous works among all peoples (1 Chronicles 16:24).
“As I live, says the Lord, every knee shall bow to me, and every tongue shall confess to God (Romans 14:11).”
Ponder that as you pray.
It was night when Jesus and his disciples went to the Garden of Gethsemane to pray. The disciples fell asleep. Jesus asked them, “Couldn’t you watch with me even one hour? Keep watch and pray (Matthew 36:40).”
It was a bright sunny day when we visited the Garden of Gethsemane. I imagined Jesus asking me, “Could you watch with me one hour? Keep watch and pray.” “Watch and pray . . . the spirit is willing, but the body is weak (Matthew 26:41).”
My friend had a need I could not meet. I told another friend and he provided for her need.
Jesus told us that prayer is like that. “Suppose you went to a friend’s house at midnight, wanting to borrow three loaves of bread. You say to him, ‘A friend of mine has just arrived for a visit and I have nothing for him to eat . . . if you keep knocking long enough, he will get up and give you whatever you need because of your shameless persistence (Luke 11:5-8).'”
They say dehydration is the #1 cause of illness for Israel’s tourists. The temperature hovered around 110 degrees while we were there, so we understood the need for water.
Long ago the psalmist wrote, “As the deer pants for flowing streams, so my soul pants for you, O God (Psalm 42:1).”
Hot, tired and thirsty souls earnestly desire communion with God through prayer.
Picture courtesy of artist Dr. John E. Weise.
We got into the boat and sailed across the Sea of Galilee. There was no storm. The sea was calm.
But we spoke of the great storm that made the disciples afraid. We remembered that Jesus rebuked the wind and the sea and there was a great calm (from Matthew 8:23-27).
I’ve always liked that story. Jesus still calms any storm. Cry out to him. He hears.