Lift my head up
Psalm 90: 12-17 (NIV)
12 Teach us to number our days,
that we may gain a heart of wisdom.
13 Relent, Lord! How long will it be?
Have compassion on your servants.
14 Satisfy us in the morning with your unfailing love,
that we may sing for joy and be glad all our days.
15 Make us glad for as many days as you have afflicted us,
for as many years as we have seen trouble.
16 May your deeds be shown to your servants,
your splendor to their children.
17 May the favor of the Lord our God rest on us;
establish the work of our hands for us—
yes, establish the work of our hands.
At my local church just now, we’ve been walking through the subject of prayer. Contemplative prayer, Unanswered Prayer, Difficult Prayers, Adoration Prayers…a great tapestry of ways in which we talk and engage with God.
And I’ve noticed that how our prayers are answered really matters to us.
Sometimes we want them answered quickly and efficiently – as though we were ordering some food at a restaurant and God was a waiter and not a creator. And when our food doesn’t arrive on time, or it doesn’t look and taste how we expect it to, our disappointment with God ends up so intense that it pushes us to the borders of unbelief. “How dare he not answer my requests! What kind of God would ignore me!”
I’m wondering if the psalmist is in the midst of those feelings here, as he calls out to God for answers. You get the feeling he’s been praying for a while. How long will this go on! I need to be satisfied by your love! I need to be glad! I need to see your deeds! He seems to spread his words across time: a morning praise for love turns to days of gladness, turns to years of experiences and satisfaction.
The great witness here is this: all of these things — joy, gladness, satisfaction, and prosperity that we all ache with the psalmist for — are things given as gifts from God and God alone. They are not able to be found in the carnal things of the world, but to be part of the eternal grace and goodness of heaven when we are blessed enough to come to him to receive them.
Lift my head up Lord,
so that as I look into your eyes
my impatience evaporates
in the warmth of your love
Give me courage to wait it out
to now look the world in the eye
as I rest my soul in the comfort of your right time
your infinite wisdom
and in your perfect will
and in your perfect way.