By Christyn Baer
Psalm 22 begins with a line familiar to us all, being five weeks into Eastertide…
“My God, My God, why have you forsaken me?”
David begins his anguished prayer with the same words that Jesus laments on the cross.
As I sit here reading this psalm on Saturday night, I’m thinking along the same lines; but rather than God, it’s Timmy, Tony, Manu, Kawhi, and Popp that I feel have let me down. I feel desperate and beat down, emotionally, after two weeks of watching my team – “the good guys” – fight back and forth with a formidable opponent, only to lose in the end.
I know there are much bigger things going on in the world than the NBA playoffs. And I shouldn’t be comparing my “hardships” in dealing with this loss to any of the real difficulties being faced on a daily basis – in Nepal, in Baltimore, in San Antonio, and right here within our own church. The injustices and conflict in our world today are not so different from what was going on in David’s time.
David continues to express his deep distress through verse 18, calling himself not a man, but a worm, scorned by man and despised by people. Then in verse 19 he begins to ask the Lord for deliverance, asking him to come quickly, knowing that the Lord is hearing his prayers and calls to be saved. He vows to praise the Lord when his sure deliverance does finally come.
Starting in verse 25, David begins to describe all the people that will join with him in praising the Lord: All the ends of the earth… all the families of the nations… those that are rich, and those that are so poor they are near to death – all will come to realize that God is King and will bow before him.
David starts out in a very bad place in this psalm; he’s deeply anguished. Yet he ends up realizing that God has not deserted him, but rather is very much still with him. So much so that David begins boldly proclaiming God’s goodness for all people, reminding us that we can go to God as we are… hungry, tired, poor in spirit.
Man will fail us – our teams will lose, our leaders will disappoint us, even our friends may let us down at times. But God will not. God never lets us down. He is with us, even before we are born. Verses 30-31 provide extra comfort for me, as I think about my baby growing within – “Future generations will be told about the Lord. They will proclaim his righteousness to a people yet unborn – for he has done it.”
We are those future generations David spoke of! We can share with the world the joy of God’s righteousness, the truth of the cross, David’s final words of Psalm 22 – “He has done it!”