Times have changed. When the COVID 19 pandemic began, the word that we heard in our conversations was the word “change.” In the past few weeks or so, the word(s) have changed to “how long?” In Psalm 13, David raised this question to the Lord,
1 How long, O Lord? Will you forget me forever?
How long will you hide your face from me?
2 How long must I take counsel in my soul
and have sorrow in my heart all the day?
How long shall my enemy be exalted over me?
3 Consider and answer me, O Lord my God;
light up my eyes, lest I sleep the sleep of death,
4 lest my enemy say, “I have prevailed over him,”
lest my foes rejoice because I am shaken.
David laid his heart out to God because he thought that God wasn’t there. He was felt alone, hurting, struggling, 24 hours a day, 7 days a week. He pled to God, “Consider and answer me, O Lord my God.” (v. 3a)
We may feel that God is allowing this drag out. Our cries are falling on deaf ears. Why is He not bringing this to an end? How long is this going to go on? When can I go back to work? When will the financial issues be lessened? Are you still up there God?
Then the Holy Spirit brings to David’s remembrance and he writes,
5 But I have trusted in your steadfast love;
my heart shall rejoice in your salvation.
6 I will sing to the Lord,
because he has dealt bountifully with me.
Did you see the words? “I have trusted in your STEADFAST love.” (v. 5a) The Holy Spirit reminded David that His love for him was “steadfast.” That means God’s love for him was no less than it was in the days of success, blessing, and joy.
Trials and difficulties may become lesser or greater for us, it does not mean that God loves us more or loves us less. His love does not change. His love is forever displayed in the cross and empty grave of our Savior Jesus. That is great news for us. We know as these days drag out for however long they will; our faithful God will remain beside us and we can trust in His “steadfast love” always.
If the days draw to a close quickly—praise be to God! If they take longer and result in some inconveniences and suffering for us remember the words of the apostle Paul as he wrote to the church in Rome,
Romans 3:3-5 – “ . . . we rejoice in our sufferings, knowing that suffering produces endurance, 4 and endurance produces character, and character produces hope, 5 and hope does not put us to shame, because God's love has been poured into our hearts through the Holy Spirit who has been given to us.
May your peace, strength, and hope rest in our Savior Jesus. He will see us through as promised.
Shalom in Jesus our Risen Messiah,
Pastor Peter M. Peitsch