To the choirmaster. A Psalm of David.
May Yahweh answer you in the day of trouble! May the name of the God of Jacob protect you! May he send you help from the sanctuary and give you support from Zion! May he remember all your offerings and regard with favor your burnt sacrifices! Selah
Oh, our God… in our reading of Scripture, may we first remember the history into which you spoke. Keep us from ripping your words from whence they were written and indiscriminately applying them to our own life situations. This is difficult, Teacher, because we innately approach anything with the lens by which we view everything, namely our own life—knowledge and experience contained therein. But keep us also from the opposite danger of deeming all your words as impractical for our daily lives. Truly, your word is a lamp for our feet, and a light to our path, not only your Psalmists’.
And so, God, though your chosen king, David, was writing about war and battle, may we be able to discern just how true your word is in our circumstances as well. For we are all with days of trouble. Yes, some more than others, but trouble befalls us all; and protection is necessary every moment. Every one of your children is daily in a war… we fight, however, not against flesh and blood, but against the powers of this dark age—those treacherous accusers and seducers. The war persists around us even when we are oblivious to it. May you reach down your loving hand and support us throughout this war. May you embolden us by your Spirit; may you equip us with your word; may you strengthen us with righteousness. Save us from this unceasing day of trouble which threatens to take captive our souls. God of Jacob, the same God of Isaac and Abraham, the God of Enoch, the God of Seth, the God of Adam… you are one God, and you are ever present with your people. I thank you for your sustaining love throughout millennia of our forsaking you. Rescue us from the wounds of sin as much as we have already been rescued from the dominion of sin.
I pray especially for those who face not just spiritual troubles, but physical ones as well. You are the savior, not just of soul, but of body as well. There are many people I know who are experiencing true physical hardship, such that I cannot even relate. I know of some who are deathly sick. Heal them, Great Healer who made our bodies. I know of many who are without jobs. Supply them, Great Worker who created the universe in seven days. I know of some who are without experience of love. Cherish them, Great Romancer who has loved us even while we were enemies. I know of some who are despairing. Confirm them, Great Faithful One who gives hope even when no hope is present. There are names attached to each of these predicaments, and you know them all. You know even more than I do. And for them I pray.
May he grant you your heart’s desire and fulfill all your plans the Psalm continues, and I do pray so. But I ask even more that our plans would be your plans and our desire your desire. That we would long for the revelation of your glory, and that we would seek it with every breath. Even if we cannot speed your actual return, may we exist to bring your return on earth before you even get here. May our plans be your plans, that we would teach your love and mercy in the context of your justice to all peoples. To our families, yes. To our friends, yes. To our neighbors, yes. To those across city, and those across state, even so those across the world… yes. May we be so overwhelmed with your love: may we shout for joy over your salvation, and in the name of our God set up our banners! May Yahweh fulfill all your petitions! And may our petitions be precisely what you have wanted all along.
I know, my King, that Yahweh saves his anointed. And who is anointed but your Son? But who is not anointed who is in your Son? Not a single one—all who are found in Christ are found in a spirit of sonship, and so we who are in Christ are in your anointing, and you who have anointed your Son will save us from the powers existent in this world. You will answer us from your holy heaven with the saving might of your right hand. We anticipate the day of your return, King. We eagerly await your everlasting domain. The domain that will bring eternal peace. The domain that will bring true love. The domain that will celebrate the family. Your wondrous kingdom come, your will be done. That is what we await. Increase our desire for it. And until that day, your people will say
Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of Yahweh our God.
They collapse and fall, but we rise and stand upright.
O Yahweh, save your children!
May he answer us when we call.