Journal Entry ~ 07/18/19
1 "Greatly have they afflicted me from my youth"- let Israel now say-
2 "Greatly have they afflicted me from my youth, yet they have not prevailed against me. - Psalm 129:1-2
Continuing on in the Psalm of Ascents, this psalm is clearly written by a troubled author. Following the triumphant Psalm 128, which was focused on the blessings of God, this psalm has a very different tone. The author has his eyes fixed on the struggles Israel has faced. You can feel the pain and frustration of the psalmist as he recounts the ways they have been attacked.
We’ve all had these days, where everyone or everything seems to be against us. We feel attacked on all sides - like the challenge will never let up. Perhaps it’s those difficult people in our lives who always seem to be challenging us - no matter how hard we try to make peace with them, they just seem to want to fight. They are harsh in their tone, they seem to misunderstand our motives, and are always on the defense. Perhaps it’s our circumstances that won’t seem to let up. We’ve been enduring an exhausting series of trials for a long time and we just want a break. If you’ve ever been in a day where you want to throw you hands up in the air and scream, “Enough already!!” then you’ve experienced one of these days.
Psalm 129 is a psalm about persevering through the pain. Life is painful. There are days it can feel like a punch straight to the gut. There is no question that days like this are going to happen to us, and unfortunately there is often little advance warning that they are coming. It may be a surprise phone call with devastating news, it may be someone else’s bad day bumps right up against ours, it may be some thought about the triggers our anxiety, some memory from our past triggers our despair. Pain is a part of living in this broken world. The question is not will it happen, the question is not how do I avoid it, the question is what do I do when it happens.
We need to have a battle plan for persevering for the pain. It’s coming and we need to be prepared for it. What’s your plan? As a believer, we must know we will face suffering in this world, but Psalm 129 teaches us that we can persevere through the pain because we have been promised victory in Christ. When we take our eyes off the pain in front of us, and fix our eyes on the ultimate victory, we will win. We can walk through these difficult days God is with us. Psalm 129 is about having a tough faith – it’s about trusting God to get us through the hard times, even when the pain is intense and the suffering is long.
Press on ~ you are loved 💗
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