I love how God will bring a certain Scripture across my path at just the right time that I need to see it. Does this happen to anybody else? It will usually come at the most unexpected time and in the most unexpected place, but it’s never coincidence. Just the other day as I was scrolling through my social media feed, I came across a friend’s post which included Psalm 61:2, and everything just paused for a moment.
“From the ends of the earth I call to you, I call as my heart grows faint; lead me to the rock that is higher than I.” (NIV)
I’ve read this verse before. I’ve even memorized it. However, this time, it leapt off the page at me and took up residence in my heart. And I haven’t stopped thinking about it since. So, tonight as I found myself crawling into bed with about as much energy as a sleeping baby, I decided to read this verse again—and not just verse 2, but the entire chapter. All eight verses. Here they are:
Hear my cry, O God;
listen to my prayer.
From the ends of the earth I call to you,
I call as my heart grows faint;
lead me to the rock that is higher than I.
For you have been my refuge,
a strong tower against the foe.
I long to dwell in your tent forever
and take refuge in the shelter of your wings.
For you, God, have heard my vows;
you have given me the heritage of those who fear your name.
Increase the days of the king’s life,
his years for many generations.
May he be enthroned in God’s presence forever;
appoint your love and faithfulness to protect him.
Then I will ever sing in praise of your name
and fulfill my vows day after day.
My exhaustion began to fade away as awe replaced it. Here’s the deal. This week has been an incredible week for me. Each night has entailed opportunities for me to testify to the goodness of God to large groups of women at my church. As thrilling as this has been for me, I found myself tired, worn out, and ready for long nap. While this is a small taste of bigger things in life that have caused me to grow weary and faint, I found the Lord trying to speak to my heart through this verse in a fresh, new way.
King David’s plea in verse 1 is coming from a place of desperation. I realized as I read this again that my own times of desperation are meant to draw me to the feet of my King, Jesus. Sadly, this is not always the case. Sometimes, I run to far lesser things in hopes that the void inside of me will be filled up. Sometimes it’s people, other times it’s things. But every time I look to created things to fill what only the Creator was intended to fill, I will come up empty—every time.
So, David cries out to God. Do I? Do you?
In verse 2, David acknowledges God’s position. This is huge! You and I must come to the place where we recognize and embrace that God is God and we are not. We are not in control. He is. We cannot fix brokenness. He can. We can not satisfy the longings of our hearts. He does. Are we ready to submit to His lordship in our lives and request the very same thing that David did?
“Lead me to the rock that is higher than I.”
In verses 3-5, David remembers God’s protection and His provision. He is a refuge, a strong tower, a shelter. All it takes to silence our fears and eliminate our doubts is to rehearse the faithfulness and the character of God. Who does God say He is in His Word? When our hearts are weary and faint, let’s choose to rehearse His faithfulness. In doing so, we will breed faith in us.
Verses 6-7 reveal David’s hope and trust in the coming Messiah. God had promised a coming King whose reign would never end. Just because David came to the end of his life before this promise was fulfilled, he never stopped believing that God would always remain true to His Word. What He promised, He would fulfill. For what promises are you waiting on the Lord? Remember today that God is not only a promise maker, but He is also a promise keeper.
David’s underlying motivation is finally revealed in verse 8—a heart that longs to praise God, no matter his circumstances. As I read through this Psalm, I can’t help but resonate with the first 7 verses. I’ve been in times of desperation. I’ve known what it feels like for my heart to be faint. I’ve cried out to God to move on my behalf. I’ve spent time rehearsing God’s faithfulness, knowing that it always produces a heart of faith within me. I’ve longed for the promised return of Christ. But when I get to verse 8, there is a bit of conviction that is delivered to my soul as I read those words. When God shows up and answers my prayers, when He comes through for me, when He works out a situation that I couldn’t see a solution for, is my first response praise? Do I default to thanksgiving and praising His name? Or do I move on to the next need, the next thing I want to see Him do for me? Is praise constantly present in my life?
I want it to be. I want my words, my actions, even my thoughts to honor Him and bless Him. I fail in this. I come up short, but I am so grateful for the timely reminders that His Word delivers to me—even through a post on Facebook.
When your heart is faint, cry out and run to the rock that is higher.