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Friday, February 27, 2015

From the Depths; Prayer on Psalm 130

Precious Father, sometimes it seems that you bring us to the pit of despair as we partake of the
sufferings of Christ. We are ashamed to lift up our heads to compare our lot with the Lord Jesus but
You have said that in some sense we are called to bear our cross as He bore His, and to make up the
measure of the fellowship of His sufferings, being made conformable to His death, as Paul put it.
What sufferings have been the lot of some of your choicest saints!

But we learn much from this Psalm in the midst of sufferings. It is not in vain to cry out to you, even
to double our efforts and call out over and over for you do hear the petitions of your people. You
would hear the voices of your saints. Even the Lord Jesus cried with a loud voice, “My God, my God,
why hast Thou forsaken me,” and even though He bore the sins of the whole world, yet you heard
Him on that day. When He called, You heard [Psalm 22:21, 24].

It the pit of afflictions and trials our sins rise before us, O Lord. We know that you have promised to
hear the prayers of your saints, but we know our sins that rise before our face, and we fear that you
will not hear us because of our iniquities. But grace intervenes and teaches us that there would be
none to stand before you, if you marked our iniquities. You DO mark and store up the sins of the
ungodly and they are written in your book, but it is not so with your covenant people.

We could have no godly fear of You, O Lord, if you did not forgive our sins, but only the horror and
terror of eternal night and an horrible pit of despair. There is no place for us to stand except in Your
mercy, O Precious Father. Shall we stand firm on our righteousness? In our wisdom? In our love for
one another? Even in our love for You, O Lord? How far we come short of Your Glory, O precious
Christ, and yet you do not cast us away, but discipline us as children, that afterwards we might be
partakers of Your holiness.

So, from the depths, we wait for You, O Lord. Our souls wait for you, for your promises have given
us hope. “Come unto Me,” you said, “and I will give you rest.” “Ps 50:15 “And call upon me in the
day of trouble: I will deliver thee, and thou shalt glorify me.” And many such things. Often in
prosperity, we grow content and do not seek you, but you love us enough to send adversity, so that
we might turn to you as our only refuge and help.

O precious Father, we exalt Your Name for You are gracious and kind to all, and do not forget Your
promises to us. You have created the heavens and the earth out of nothing and sustain them with
Your powerful Word, for Your Word cannot change, they endure for as long as Your Word has
appointed for them

So are the times of Your appointment for us, precious Father, that from Your love and grace are
designed for our good and purification.

We have days of light and nights of darkness. We rejoice in the light and joy in faith and love and
righteousness and hope. How good are the days of our faith!  But You have also appointed nights for
us, and sometimes our faith is shaken and we are kept only by Your power and goodness. We cry out
to You in the darkness and sometimes we wonder if we are heard, but Your Holy Spirit works faith
and hope in us, hope that shines even in the darkness and brings us encouragement.

And so, in hope we wait for Thee, O precious Father. Sometimes the nights are long indeed, but we
wait for Thee because You have given us hope. We wait as the watchman waits through the long
night for the dawning of the day. It is Your Word that gives us hope, for the Scriptures tell us that
You are merciful and kind and gracious to Your children, and will not forsake us. There is full
redemption in You, O Father, because of Jesus Christ our Lord.

Our problem is our sins and iniquities, O Lord, and we confess that these are the causes of our
darkness. And this is our hope and trust, that You will bring to us by that same Scripture the calm
assurance that our sins are fully forgiven and put away by the blood of Christ, our redeemer. We can
put them away by Your grace and begin to make progress in our Christian walk and life. We have
faith now in the often darkness of this present life, but the light of hope shines before us because of
Your mercy, and we know that our redemption draws nigh, because of Your promises.

The morning is appointed for us, Dear Father. In the morning of Your grace there is plenty of
redemption and mercy. We are content to wait.

We pray these things in the name of our Savior, the Lord Jesus. Amen.

1 Out of the depths have I cried unto thee, O LORD.
2 Lord, hear my voice: let thine ears be attentive to the voice of my supplications. 3 If thou, LORD,
shouldest mark iniquities, O Lord, who shall stand? 
4 But there is forgiveness with thee, that thou mayest be feared. 
5 I wait for the LORD, my soul doth wait, and in his word do I hope.
6 My soul waiteth for the Lord more than they that watch for the morning: I say, more than they that
watch for the morning.
7 Let Israel hope in the LORD: for with the LORD there is mercy, and with him is plenteous
redemption.
8 And he shall redeem Israel from all his iniquities.   (Ps 130)
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