When Your Soul Weeps With Grief
We live in a fallen and broken world and we ourselves are fallen and broken people. There are times when the weight of our pains and losses overtakes us and we feel as though we cannot go on. You might feel like that right now. If so, you are not alone.
In Psalm 119:28, the psalmist feels the weight of living in this sinful world and asks God to strengthen him. What's amazing to notice is that the psalmist does not pray for his grief to be taken away here, but instead, prays for the Lord to strengthen him in the midst of his grief. There is nothing wrong with praying for our grief to be taken away (that is a great thing to pray), but we must remember, even in the midst of our grief, when the darkness feels like it will not lift, God’s Word is what will really strengthen us.
SORROWFUL, YET REJOICING
In this life, we will be faced with grief because sin entered into the world (Genesis 3). However, it's not just our own personal sin that causes grief (if it is we are called to repent), but much is also caused from the destruction of living in a sinful word such as: natural disasters, accidents, being sinned against, sickness and loss. Many times in this life we will feel as the psalmist describes here, completely overwhelmed with grief. When this happens and you feel like all hope is lost, pray as the psalmist does, “Lord, strengthen me according to Your Word." God’s Word has life giving power and it can indeed strengthen and revive our hearts even when we are filled with grief.
Consider the apostle Paul's strange words in 2 Corinthians 6:10 where he says that he is “sorrowful, yet always rejoicing.” This is actually an oxymoron that is only possible through reliance upon the Lord. Tim Keller explains:
“While other worldviews lead us to sit in the midst of life’s joys, foreseeing the coming sorrows, Christianity empowers its people to sit in the midst of this world’s sorrows, tasting the coming joy.” – Tim Keller
There is nothing wrong with weeping and feeling godly sorrow, in fact, in Scripture we see that Jesus wept over the death of Lazarus even though He knew He was going to bring him back to life to display His power and authority (John 11:35). So while it's ok to grieve, we also have hope. Our hope lies in the glorious fact that this world is not all there is —the Lord has full power and authority over everything that happens and He will one day restore all brokenness. God’s Word gives us hope and strength even in the midst of our grief because He promises us in His Word that He is coming back and that He will wipe away everything that plagues our lives with grief today,
“He will wipe away every tear from their eyes; and there will no longer be any death; there will no longer be any mourning, or crying, or pain... (Revelation 21:4).”
“Consider Him who has endured such hostility by sinners against Himself, so that you will not grow weary and lose heart.” - Hebrews 12:3
Cry out to God with all that is bringing you grief and ask for Him so strengthen you in His Word.
- Psalm 119:25-32
- Walking with God through Pain and Suffering | Tim Keller