“Save me, O God!
For the waters have come up to my neck.
I sink in deep mire,
where there is no foothold…
But as for me, my prayer is to you, O LORD.
At an acceptable time, O God,
in the abundance of your steadfast love answer me in your saving faithfulness…
You who seek God, let your hearts revive.
For the LORD hears the needy
and does not despise his own people who are prisoners.”
Psalm 69:1-2, 13, 32-33
What a difficult, beautifully humble prayer. An honest cry to his God as the psalmist pours out his heart—holding nothing back as he describes his overwhelming, desperate situation.
Yet he determines that his response is to continually cry out to the Lord, believing firmly that the God of heaven hears and will answer him in saving faithfulness “at an acceptable time.”
The inclusion of that phrase is so telling of the writer’s faith. There is not a demand for immediate relief, for God to do something on the psalmist’s timeline. Instead, we see an acknowledgement of the wisdom and sovereignty of God. A bowing before the Lord, trusting in His power to act, His steadfast love and faithfulness to guarantee perfect action, and His wisdom to know the best timing.
Even in the midst of affliction, right in of the apparent silence of waiting, there is faith that the Lord hears the needy when we call. Our hearts can revive and trust in our God’s faithfulness to His people. We can bow down before this great God and wait on Him, because there is purpose in His timing. It is not indecision or indifference. It is love. Love that fights for the best possible outcome.
“O my Strength, I will watch for you,
for you, O God, are my fortress.
My God in his steadfast love will meet me;
God will let me look on triumph over my enemies…
But I will sing of your strength;
I will sing aloud of your steadfast love in the morning.
For you have been to me a fortress
and a refuge in the day of my distress.
O my Strength, I will sing praises to you.
for you, O God, are my fortress,
the God who shows me steadfast love.”
Psalm 59:9-10, 16-17
“Once God has spoken;
twice have I heard this:
that power belongs to God,
and that to you, O Lord, belongs steadfast love.”