Asking Questions in Fear
My soul also is greatly troubled. But you, O Lord—how long? – Psalm 6:3 (ESV)
A friend once asked Isidor I. Rabi, a Nobel prize winner in science, how he became a scientist. Rabi replied that every day after school his mother would talk to him about his school day. She wasn’t so much interested in what he had learned that day, but she always inquired, “Did you ask a good question today?” “Asking good questions,” Rabi said, “made me become a scientist.” (Source Unknown)
Psalm 6 is filled with questions. David is afraid and filled with questions. He can’t stop crying. He’s overwhelmed with grief, depression, discouragement, loneliness, fear, sickness, and exhaustion. David’s soul is troubled and wonders if the attacks from his enemies and God’s delay are because of his own sin. Questions are normal when life gets difficult. Pastor Jim walked us through Psalm 6 and helped us answer some of the same questions we face when life gets tough.
Jesus is not afraid of your questions. Just make sure you go to His Word for the answers. How do you think asking God good questions could help grow your faith?
Thank God for being faithful even when you have questions and are struggling with your faith. Ask God to use your questions to grow your trust in Him.
Where is God in My Sickness?
Be gracious to me, O Lord, for I am languishing; heal me, O Lord, for my bones are troubled. – Psalm 6:2 (ESV)
The Boston Globe, which carries a daily column designed to answer readers’ queries, listed the top ten unanswerable questions. Here’s one: “I am nine years of age and have a cat that eats regularly and needs to go on a diet. He also eats mice when he is out. How many calories in a mouse?” (Sunshine Magazine)
God didn’t answer all of David’s specific questions in Psalm 6 but He would eventually answer the most important questions. David, like us, wondered where God was in his sickness. David was crushed and brokenhearted on account of his trials; he was too weak to bear up under the weight of his woes. It became a case, therefore, of real sickness caused by unique outward troubles. This is demonstrated by such expressions as the following: – “I am languishing; heal me, for my bones are troubled.”
Have you ever experienced physical sickness as a result of fear and worry? What did Pastor Jim share that gave you the most encouragement about the presence of God in sickness?
The psalmist asked for God’s graciousness in sickness. Praise God for the times He has shown you grace when you were sick. Ask God to provide you with extra grace in any areas of your life where you feel weak.
Where is God in My Suffering?
Turn, O Lord, deliver my life; save me for the sake of your steadfast love. For in death there is no remembrance of you; in Sheol who will give you praise? – Psalm 6:4-5 (ESV)
B.M. Launderville has written, “The vine clings to the oak during the fiercest of storms. Although the violence of nature may uproot the oak, twining tendrils still cling to it. If the vine is on the side opposite the wind, the great oak is its protection; if it is on the exposed side, the tempest only presses it closer to the trunk. In some of the storms of life, God intervenes and shelters us; while in others He allows us to be exposed so that we will be pressed more closely to Him.” (Today in the Word)
In Psalm 6, David is clinging to God. His deep sufferings led him to inquire whether it was not on account of his sins that he was afflicted and whether he should regard his sorrow as proof that God was displeased with him for his sins. David didn’t want anything to come between him and God.
How have you experienced the aforementioned example of the vine in suffering? When has God used suffering to draw you closer to Himself?
Thank God for the promise of His presence even when you are suffering and don’t feel Him. Ask God to use any suffering you are currently experiencing to draw you closer to Himself.
Where is God in My Sorrow?
I am weary with my moaning; every night I flood my bed with tears; I drench my couch with my weeping. My eye wastes away because of grief; it grows weak because of all my foes. – Psalm 6:6-7 (ESV)
The story is told of the Angel that was sent to Earth with orders to bring back the most precious thing he could find on Earth. He flew down and searched from pole to pole. He went into the depths of the sea. He picked up a ‘gold nugget’ … but he thought that was not good enough for the King. He found a ‘flawless pearl’…but it wasn’t enough…
The Angel kept searching through and through. Finally, he heard a sob. It was a man who was on his knees, pouring out his heart to God for help and forgiveness. The Angel said to himself; “Ah; that’s it. I have found it.” The Angel held his hand under the man’s face and caught one of the “tears” that were flowing down his face. He flew in triumph back to Heaven; presented the ‘tear’ to the Father…proclaiming that the ‘tear’ is the most precious thing on earth. (Sammy Burgess)
God saw the tears of David. Tears are a language God understands. God’s timing is always perfect, wise, and good. However, in the moment David wasn’t sure God saw his tears. Our perception of the right time for a particular action is always missing part of the bigger picture and plan of God. But based on God’s love for us and promise to do good for us we can know this: God delays for our delight.
It has been said we should never put a question mark where God puts a period. This means don’t question things God has promised. How have times of sorrow tempted you to put a question mark where God has put a period?
Praise God for the promise of Revelation 21:4, “He will wipe away every tear from their eyes, and death shall be no more, neither shall there be mourning, nor crying, nor pain anymore, for the former things have passed away.”
Answering Questions With Faith
Depart from me, all you workers of evil, for the Lord has heard the sound of my weeping. The Lord has heard my plea; the Lord accepts my prayer. 10 All my enemies shall be ashamed and greatly troubled; they shall turn back and be put to shame in a moment. – Psalm 6:8-10 (ESV)
The albatross, a majestic seabird with the longest wingspan of any bird, spends eighteen months at sea, touching down only on water, losing their ability to make smooth earth-landings. Returning to nest and laying eggs, they come in like drunken sailors, tumbling, skidding, crashing, earning these regal birds the epithet gooney birds.
These powerful seabirds spread enormous wings, sometimes reaching an eleven-foot span, and glide above turbulent seas. They need storm-strong wind currents to keep them aloft. In calm seas, they are virtually unable to get airborne. Consistently smooth weather conditions prevent albatross migration from the Southern Hemisphere. (Preaching Today)
Storms grew David’s faith in Psalm 6. He had assurance that God had heard his prayer and that he would triumph over all his enemies, and that all his troubles would pass away. David’s enemies could not be successful, for the Lord had heard his prayer. This sudden answer to prayer often occurs in the Psalms, as if, while the psalmist was pleading, an immediate answer to prayer was granted.
It is important to remember that God uses storms when we start to question God’s presence and timing. It’s also important to remember that God hears all of your prayers. What was your biggest takeaway from Pastor Jim’s sermon on Sunday?
Thank God for hearing all of your prayers. Thank God for growing your faith. Ask God to help you remember His faithfulness in the middle of the storms.