Needing + Pleading = Receiving

“Incline your ear, O Lord, and answer me,
    for I am poor and needy.
Preserve my life, for I am godly;
    save your servant, who trusts in you—you are my God.
Be gracious to me, O Lord,
    for to you do I cry all the day.
Gladden the soul of your servant,
    for to you, O Lord, do I lift up my soul.
For you, O Lord, are good and forgiving,
    abounding in steadfast love to all who call upon you.
Give ear, O Lord, to my prayer;
    listen to my plea for grace.
In the day of my trouble I call upon you,
    for you answer me.

There is none like you among the gods, O Lord,
    nor are there any works like yours…
For you are great and do wondrous things;
    you alone are God…
For great is your steadfast love toward me;
    you have delivered my soul from the depths of Sheol…
But you, O Lord, are a God merciful and gracious,
    slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness.
Turn to me and be gracious to me;
    give your strength to your servant,
    and save the son of your maidservant.
Show me a sign of your favor,
    that those who hate me may see and be put to shame
    because you, Lord, have helped me and comforted me.” Psalm 86:1-8,10,13,15-17

David’s desperation is ingrained in dependence, his cry borne out of personal communion with His Savior. The infinite God of life and of the soul is the only One who knows and can remedy his trouble. He is not alone in his struggle, but wrestles with the very God who hears and answers prayer. Every need is tethered to an attribute, every outpouring an opening to be filled.

Nurturing a relationship with the Lord maintains ongoing communion, trust, dependence, and an indelible sense that He is our God. We grow in knowledge of Him, and of ourselves, and remain intricately connected in mind and emotion. We know He has delivered us from the depths, we know by experience His ongoing love and mercy, strength and comfort. Therefore we can plead boldly for needs we know He supplies and hurts He assuages.

Do I see how my abundant need is matched by God’s abounding faithfulness? Do I confess my sin based on His mercy and grace, and plead based on His long-suffering? Is my trust based on the fidelity of His word, my confidence in His goodness? All these are true, and are ours for the practicing. (Philippians 4:19)

How committed are we to constant prayer? To the consistent exercise of abiding? A regular, specific time in private quiet is vital, but so is the ongoing conversation of the heart. What are we learning that affects our introspection, meditation, and pleading? What are the results: greater peace, growing patience, increasing boldness, deeper worship, multiplied thanks? (John 15:5; Colossians 4:2; 1 Thessalonians 5:17)

God of all bounty, keep me abiding in prayer always, maintaining both vigorous communion and a quiet trusting heart. And for all Your answers, I give You glory, thanks, and praise.

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