LORD, how are they increased that trouble me! many are they that rise up against me. Many there be which say of my soul, there is no help for him in God. Selah. But thou, O LORD, art a shield for me; my glory, and the lifter up of mine head. I cried unto the LORD with my voice, and he heard me out of his holy hill. Selah. Psalm 3:1-4
We live in a world that is full of hurting people, and the enemy would love to destroy our joy by bringing more and more hurt into this world. Each day, I serve God by ministering to those that have deep hurt and wounds that have come to them at the hands of others and then ultimately from their own choices. I am certainly not immune to hurt: people disappoint, plans are thwarted, our lives are interacting with people that are just so mad and frustrated that their pains overflow onto each of us daily.
So, what are we to do? Surely, there is a better answer besides just grinning and bearing it. I mean really – that is not living the abundant life. Thankfully, the Bible gives us clear direction on how God wants us to respond to hurt, and the book of The Psalms is a great place to go for sound wisdom. Many of the psalms were written during times of great hurt, fear and pain. The enemy wants us to spend our lives focused on and defined by our hurts, BUT GOD… He wants us to FOCUS ON HIM in the midst of our hurts.
Psalm 54:1–7 O God, save me by your name, and vindicate me by your might. O God, hear my prayer; give ear to the words of my mouth. For strangers have risen against me; ruthless men seek my life; they do not set God before themselves. Selah Behold, God is my helper; the Lord is the upholder of my life. He will return the evil to my enemies; in your faithfulness put an end to them. With a freewill offering I will sacrifice to you; I will give thanks to your name, O Lord, for it is good. For he has delivered me from every trouble, and my eye has looked in triumph on my enemies.
Psalm 56 Be merciful to me, O God, for man would swallow me up; Fighting all day he oppresses me. My enemies would hound me all day, For there are many who fight against me, O Most High. Whenever I am afraid, I will trust in You. In God I will praise His word, In God I have put my trust; I will not fear. What can flesh do to me? All day they twist my words; All their thoughts are against me for evil. They gather together, They hide, they mark my steps, When they lie in wait for my life. Shall they escape by iniquity? In anger cast down the peoples, O God! You number my wanderings; Put my tears into Your bottle; Are they not in Your book? When I cry out to You, then my enemies will turn back; This I know, because God is for me. In God I will praise His word, In the LORD I will praise His word, In God I have put my trust; I will not be afraid. What can man do to me? Vows made to You are binding upon me, O God; I will render praises to You, For You have delivered my soul from death. Have You not kept my feet from falling, That I may walk before God In the light of the living?
Today, if you are hurting or facing a foe that seeks to overtake you – turn to God, put your focus on Him and not your enemy. He will give you the strength you need to fight and stand against that which the enemy want to use to destroy you.
May Psalm 57:1 be your prayer today, Be merciful to me, O God, be merciful to me, for in you my soul takes refuge; in the shadow of your wings I will take refuge, till the storms of destruction pass by.
Lynne Jahns is a Christian counselor and holds the honor of being the first Director of Barbara’s Place at America’s Keswick, a residential addiction recovery ministry for women. Lynne is married to Bill Jahns, who also serves on staff at America’s Keswick as the Director of Housekeeping. When not working and studying, Lynne loves to be outdoors and to travel. Family is very important to both Lynne and Bill and a lot of free time is spent with relatives and close family friends. Lynne holds a Bachelor of Arts degree in Psychology and Behavioral Sciences from Cedarville University in Ohio, a Master of Arts degree from The College of New Jersey in Community Counseling, and a Doctor of Philosophy Degree from Louisiana Baptist University.