“I love the Lord, because He has heard my voice and my pleas for mercy. Because He inclined His ear to me, therefore I will call on Him as long as I live.” (Psalm 116:1-2, ESV)
The imagery of the words found in this passage of Scripture is profound! Whatever the writer of this particular Psalm had gone through, he was able to find reassurance, yes, even deliverance from it at God’s hand. The result was the deepest sense of gratitude to God for both hearing and answering his pleas!
We all understand the value of being listened to when we need to talk, don’t we? We’ve probably all experienced it. We attempted to talk to someone … perhaps it was about something that was pressing heavily on our heart …only to realize they were barely listening or comprehending what we were trying to tell them because they were either distracted or pre-occupied with something else.
Our God is never too busy … never pre-occupied with other concerns … never unavailable … to hear our requests! He is the loving, caring and ever-present Jehovah God … the great “I AM”! The inspired writer James tells us in James 1:5 that He never tires or grows weary of meeting our needs and requests that are offered up to Him in faith.
Although the writer of Psalm 116 is unknown … we can see this was a very personal Psalm as the writer makes reference to himself 37 times in 19 verses. The overriding sentiment of this Psalm identifies the assurance that the One who spoke this world into existence … who created every living thing in our universe … who fashioned man out of the dust of the ground … “bent down to listen” … “turned His ear” … “paid attention to” … will do the very same thing for each one of us!
Would you just try for a moment to get your hands around this wonderful truth? That, my friends, is the kind of God we have! And the writer said, “Because He inclined His ear to me, therefore I will call on Him as long as I live.” Without doubt, this was something that was pressing heavily on the writer’s heart!
- Are we willing to look up to Him and make known our heart’s deepest longings, fears, needs and concerns? He is bending down to hear from our hearts!
- Are we willing to look up and ask for the safety of our children, our grandchildren, our spouse, our loved ones and friends? Yes … He is always willing to bend down … not because He is hard of hearing … but because He wants us to realize that He is near!
- At various times in biblical history, God’s people prayed to Him in very specific ways … and He bent down to hear their cries and their concerns! Yes, we are living in difficult and challenging times and our leaders need our prayers. God listens!
- Are we willing to look up to Him and ask for Him to touch the hearts and lives of our national leaders in a way that they will turn their hearts to His Word?
- If they are not willing to turn to the Lord … are we willing to look up to Him and say in trust and faith, “Thy will be done” and mean it?
- Are we willing to look up to Him … asking for wisdom, courage and strength for those who lead the people of God that they may lead us in a way that is right … that is good … that will bring to Jehovah the honor and glory that He alone deserves? He is listening!
- Are we fervently asking our Lord to help “increase our faith” and strengthen our character with the assurance that He will? He is watching, waiting and so ready to lift us up.
- Are we looking up to God, with love and concern for our brothers and sisters in Christ and asking the Lord to strengthen and build them up as they experience the loneliness of being in quarantine or the suffering that accompanies pain and illness? He is bending down to hear our cry and our request!
Yes … our God is listening! He is bending down to hear our every word, showing His interest, compassion, and love!
Because of the virus, many of us have not been able to get out much, if any, and the hardest part of it is our inability to meet with God’s people in a public way! May it not be asserted or implied by anyone that our absence is reflective of a lack of faith or trust in Him who knows, sees and is fully aware of what lies in each of our hearts!
The most wonderful lesson to be drawn from Psalm 16 is that we can relate to this man’s testimony. What had been true in his life should be true for us as well.
The Psalmist says, “I love the Lord BECAUSE…”
We can sum our love up with 1 John 4:19, “We love him, because he first loved us.”
Bill Fairchild, Jr.