Men Cry Out Against the Heavens
For reading & meditation - Psalms 9
"he [God] ... cares for the helpless. He does not ignore those who cry t o him for help" (v. 12, NLT)
Having learned something about how to cope with failure, we turn now to face the issue of what to do when life breaks us with unmerited suffering and affliction. I get more letters on this subject than on almost any other. People write and say, "My suffering is so great that I sometimes doubt the existence of a God of love. Can you say something that will help me regain my faith in this tragic hour?" One of the most poignant elements in suffering is that there often seems to be no meaning in it. One great writer said that anyone who was undisturbed by the problem of unmerited suffering was a victim of either a hardened heart or a softened brain. He was right. Everyone who is mentally alive, especially if he believes in a God of love, finds this problem difficult to solve. No wonder the poet cried out: My son, the world is dark with griefs and graves So dark that men cry out against the heavens. I suppose there is nothing that makes people cry out against the heavens so much as the anguish which comes unbidden and unmerited. Some of our sufferings are the result of our own crassness and stupidity. But what about when life breaks us with sufferings that are not directly related to us? Does God remember us then? Our text today says that He does. This in itself should be enough to keep us brave, if not blithe; in peace, if not in happiness. Write it on your heart. God remembers you in your suffering. He really does!
Lord Jesus, You who experienced suffering in a way I will never know, hold me close to Your heart so that my sufferings will not demolish me, but develop me. For Your own dear Name's sake. Amen.
For Further Study
1. What is God's purpose in suffering?
2. What are some of the ways in which Christ suffered?