Psalm 38:22 - Make haste to help me, O Lord, my salvation!
Psalm 70:1 - Make haste, O God, to deliver me! Make haste to help me, O Lord!
Psalm 40:13 - Be pleased, O Lord, to deliver me; O Lord, make haste to help me!
Psalm 109:26 - Help me, O Lord my God! Oh, save me according to Your mercy,
Psalm 69:1 - Save me, O God! For the waters have come up to my neck.
I was on my knees, full of hurt, pain, regret, fear – not knowing which way to go or how to get out of the situation. Then in a flash, I knew suddenly what I had to do… Testimony.
Have you ever asked God for help during difficult circumstances? Before you answer that question, let me turn that question on its’ head, then come back to it. When you have had difficult times in your life and you didn’t turn to God, what were the results?
We know what happens when we don’t listen to what God tells us – as in the example with Saul last week. In I Samuel 15, God used Samuel to tell Saul – “Now go and attack Amalek, and utterly destroy all that they have, and do not spare them.” As we know, Saul didn’t listen and it didn’t go so well. In fact, Saul even asked for God’s forgiveness, but Saul was no longer in God’s favor. Now that could seem mean, but God knew Saul’s heart and that he was not repentant. He just said the words, “I’m sorry” like a 5 year old that just all the cookies would say. Oh he’s sorry alright. Sorry he got caught.
What’s another example where someone was in a bad place and didn’t turn to
God for help, but either was relying on himself to get through something or relying on someone/something else for help?
Addictions come to mind here (somethings – that we use instead of relying on God)
Ok – so, how have things gone, when you asked God to work in your life, during hardships? Someone have a testimony?
*If you get an answer like – well, God just didn’t really show up. Perhaps follow up the question with – When you asked God to work in your life, were you asking Him to do what you wanted or were you asking Him to help you change your heart about the situation?
God’s word makes it clear that he wants to be our provider.
Psalm 9:9 - The Lord also will be a refuge for the oppressed, A refuge in times of trouble.
Psalm 62:8 - Trust in Him at all times, you people; Pour out your heart before Him; God is a refuge for us.
Psalm 46:1 - God is our refuge and strength, A very present help in trouble.
Psalm 20:1 - May the Lord answer you in the day of trouble; May the name of the God of Jacob defend you;
***Psalm 86:7 - In the day of my trouble I will call upon You, For You will answer me.
Here is just one example where God’s word takes it a step further:
2 Corinthians 1:3-4 - Blessed be the God and Father of our Lord Jesus Christ, the Father of mercies and God of all comfort, 4 who comforts us in all our tribulation, that we may be able to comfort those who are in any trouble, with the comfort with which we ourselves are comforted by God.
But even after hearing all of that, often enough believers turn to other things in their lives. We go for the quick fix or the feel good payoff.
Ultimately, we will only ever receive God’s comfort if we are willing to accept it and whatever He has planned for us. And it’s always going to be in His timing. But there is another factor – we may not understand how God will answer us or sometimes what His answer means. But the bible is clear:
Proverbs 3:5-6 - Trust in the Lord with all your heart, And lean not on your own understanding; In all your ways acknowledge Him, And He shall direct your paths.
Phillipians 4:6 - Be anxious for nothing, but in everything by prayer and supplication, with thanksgiving, let your requests be made known to God;
It’s just like tithing -
2 Corinthians 9:7 - So let each one give as he purposes in his heart, not grudgingly or of necessity; for God loves a cheerful giver.
To give – not out of necessity, but cheerfully. To be cheerful. Sounds weird? Well, listen to this – because the same holds true with our prayers and when we are looking for breakthroughs in our lives
1 Peter 4:12-14 - Beloved, do not think it strange concerning the fiery trial which is to try you, as though some strange thing happened to you; 13 but rejoice to the extent that you partake of Christ’s sufferings, that when His glory is revealed, you may also be glad with exceeding joy. 14 If you are reproached for the name of Christ, blessed are you, for the Spirit of glory and of God rests upon you. On their part He is blasphemed, but on your part He is glorified.
Remember Psalm 86 from earlier?
Verse 7 says - In the day of my trouble I will call upon You, For You will answer me.
I don’t bring all this up, to bring you down. God blesses those who bless Him, plain and simple.
Psalm 86 - Bow down Your ear, O Lord, hear me; For I am poor and needy.
2 Preserve my life, for I am holy; You are my God; Save Your servant who trusts in You!
3 Be merciful to me, O Lord, For I cry to You all day long.
4 Rejoice the soul of Your servant, For to You, O Lord, I lift up my soul.
5 For You, Lord, are good, and ready to forgive, And abundant in mercy to all those who call upon You.
6 Give ear, O Lord, to my prayer; And attend to the voice of my supplications.
7 In the day of my trouble I will call upon You, For You will answer me.
See how David says – “You are my God; Save Your servant who trusts in You!”
God calls us to have a relationship with Him. Not a one sided relationship, where you rub the magic lamp and he comes and grants your wish. He desires us to give Him our hearts and to trust in Him above everything else in our lives. When we honor Him and pick up our cross to follow Him – He will surely honor us. You remember the quote - “For if you forgive men their trespasses, your heavenly Father will also forgive you. But if you do not forgive men their trespasses, neither will your Father forgive your trespasses. - Matthew 6:14-15 It starts with us and our hearts. Love God with all your heart, with all your soul, with all your mind and all your strength. It’s not a question or a favor. It’s a commandment. So, during this coming week, let’s think on how in our daily walk – how we can honor God with our thoughts and our prayers. Let’s see what He does with it.
Jeremiah 17:5 - Thus says the Lord: “Cursed is the man who trusts in man And makes flesh his strength, Whose heart departs from the Lord.
Acts 17:11 - These were more fair-minded than those in Thessalonica, in that they received the word with all readiness, and searched the Scriptures daily to find out whether these things were so.
Matthew 13:28 - He said to them, ‘An enemy has done this.’ The servants said to him, ‘Do you want us then to go and gather them up?’
2 Corinthians 7:10 - For godly sorrow produces repentance leading to salvation, not to be regretted; but the sorrow of the world produces death.
Romans 2:4 - Or do you despise the riches of His goodness, forbearance, and longsuffering, not knowing that the goodness of God leads you to repentance?
2 Timothy 2:25 - in humility correcting those who are in opposition, if God perhaps will grant them repentance, so that they may know the truth,
Matthew 27:46 - And about the ninth hour Jesus cried out with a loud voice, saying, “Eli, Eli, lama sabachthani?” that is, “My God, My God, why have You forsaken Me?”
Leading to Psalm 22 -
Philippians 4:7 - and the peace of God, which surpasses all understanding, will guard your hearts and minds through Christ Jesus.
1 Samuel 2:30 - Therefore the Lord God of Israel says: ‘I said indeed that your house and the house of your father would walk before Me forever.’ But now the Lord says: ‘Far be it from Me; for those who honor Me I will honor, and those who despise Me shall be lightly esteemed.