January 15, 2023
Father, You are our Help and our Deliverer. As David said, You do not restrain Your mercy. Your steadfast love and faithfulness are what preserve us. May all of us who love Your salvation say regularly, “Great is the Lord!” We know that without You we are poor and needy, without hope in this world, but You are the one who drew us up from the pit, set us on a rock, and put a song of praise in our mouths. Thank You, Lord.
But we confess that even though we know this, our lives sometimes speak otherwise. You ask us to make You alone our trust, but often we rest our security in our relationships, or our bank accounts, or our jobs. You ask us to proclaim Your goodness and salvation to all, but often we remain silent for fear of what others would think. You ask us to delight in Your law because it is truth and goodness, but often we prefer to base our decisions on our own reasoning and desires. You ask us to rejoice in You, but often we are caught up in worry and stress. Father, forgive us. By Your Spirit, give light to our minds, strength to our wills, and rest to our souls. Enable us to once again delight in Your will and walk in Your ways, to the glory of Your name and for the demonstration of Your goodness to a watching and hurting world.
While David in this psalm expresses delight and trust in You, his requests display also that life was tough. We see this reflected in Ecclesiastes, and so often we feel it in our own daily lives, too. We may not have people seeking our lives, but Father, we pray for Your people around the world who do face that reality in persecution, in gangs, in abusive relationships, in slavery and trafficking. We pray that oppressors be brought to justice and victims to safety and peace. In our own congregation, Lord, there are those in difficult family relationships or struggling marriages, in jobs that are wearying or stressful, who face financial strain or physical pain or mental health challenges. You, Lord, are our Help and Deliverer. You take thought over the pain and weariness we each experience. And You act on our behalf. We pray that You would do so in a way that would restore our delight and trust in You and display Your greatness to others.
O Lord, truly none can compare with You. Today, as we hear Your Word, praise Your name, sit at Your table, and enjoy the community of Your people, would You put a new song in our mouths? A song of praise that would last all through the challenges of this week? We pray that in doing so many would see and fear and put their trust in You.
We ask this in the name of the Father, Son, and Holy Spirit, and all God’s people said, Amen.