Sometimes we have a hard time asking for help. On more than one occasion this has caused me to get into a difficulty that I could have easily avoided. One reason why many of us struggle with asking for help is that we like to think that we want to be thought of as self-sufficient.
In today’s reading, David recognized that he could not solve his problems by himself. He needed God’s help, and he needed it quickly! Notice the urgency in his language. He begins this short lament with the word “hasten” and ends it with the command “do not delay”! In between these two pleas he twice urges God to “come quickly” (vv. 1, 5).
David illustrates his plight by describing two groups of people. There are those who want to take his life, shame him, and discredit him (vv. 2–3). David prays that these people will be stopped in their tracks. Then there are people who rejoice in the Lord. These people never tire of declaring that “The LORD is great!” (v. 4). David prays that they will be supported and blessed. He places himself in this latter group and declares, “But as for me, I am poor and needy; come quickly to me, O God” (v. 5).
This prayer teaches us that we should recognize and confess our need for God. We are not self-sufficient and there is no shame in begging God for help. It also teaches us that in the midst of a difficult situation, we can still proclaim that “The LORD is great!” (v. 4). When we do so we are joining with the faithful throughout the ages who have testified to its truth.
>> In the gospels, a father asked Jesus to heal his son. Jesus said if he really believed He would help. The father replied, “I do believe; help me overcome my unbelief” (Mark 9:24). This father illustrates the sense of dependence on God displayed in today’s psalm.
Lord, show us how to recognize our need for you. Help us always to turn to you in our time of difficulty. Today’s psalm teaches us how to do this in a humble and honest way.