What should I do? A friend asked.
I often think that what is difficult about living life is not problems themselves. It is difficult when I do not know how to face the problems. It is not easy when I do not know what to do or my attitudes towards problems perhaps make it more difficult. Just like cooking… for me, to decide on what to cook is more stressful than the cooking itself.
This morning as I read the Psalms e.g. 6, 8-10, 14, 16, 19, 21, I observed how David coped with problems. He prayed. How did he pray?
He complained to God. He told God about his fears, his tears and all that is in his heart. He narrated to God what his enemies were doing to him. He poured it all to God. For women, this is cathartic – to be able to pour it out. More often than not, we do not really seek answers. We just need to release the pent-up anxieties and tell someone who would listen without judging with full attention and empathy.
More than just telling it all to God, David turn it all to God. He called on God to do something. Bahala ka na, Lord. Here I am surrounded with my foes. Avenge me. Take care of my concerns.
David prayed and praised. He prayed with a dual lens of reality – his circumstances and his God. Both are real. He cried out his fears but he also sang praises to his God. The God who rescues, the Avenger who takes care of the afflicted, the orphans, widows and the helpless.
David is a man of prayer. He lived out his challenging life in prayers. He sought God with his heart, body and soul. He prayed in the midst of hardships – running for his life, hiding from his enemies. Many of his psalms were written when he was troubled, when he sinned, when he was sad and burdened.
In spite of all these, he prayed in praise of his God. So many psalms of praise – singing out the wondrous works of God: His creation and salvation, revealing God’s character – His compassion and love for His creatures. (Psa 8, 9, 19, 21)
Are you troubled, dear friend? Is life giving you a hard time? Are you in despair asking What should I do? Turn to the Psalms – learn from David. Pray and praise. Tell it all to God. He listens. More than just listen, God shows us what to do.