Streams in the Desert, October 31st
Likewise also the Spirit helpeth our infirmities; for we know not what to pray for as we ought; but the Spirit itself maketh intercession for us with groanings which cannot be uttered. And he that searcheth the hearts knoweth what is the mind of the Spirit, because he maketh intercession for the saints according to the will of God (Rom. 8:26, 27).
This is the deep mystery of prayer. This is the delicate divine mechanism which words cannot interpret, and which theology cannot explain, but which the humblest believer knows even when he does not understand.
Oh, the burdens that we love to bear and cannot understand! Oh, the inarticulate out-reachings of our hearts for things we cannot comprehend! And yet we know they are an echo from the throne and a whisper from the heart of God. It is often a groan rather than a song, a burden rather than a buoyant wing. But it is a blessed burden, and it is a groan whose undertone is praise and unutterable joy. It is "a groaning which cannot be uttered." We could not ourselves express it always, and sometimes we do not understand any more than that God is praying in us, for something that needs His touch and that He understands.
And so we can just pour out the fullness of our heart, the burden of our spirit, the sorrow that crushes us, and know that He hears, He loves, He understands, He receives; and He separates from our prayer all that is imperfect, ignorant and wrong, and presents the rest, with the incense of the great High Priest, before the throne on high; and our prayer is heard, accepted and answered in His name.
--A. B. Simpson
It is not necessary to be always speaking to God or always hearing from God, to have communion with Him; there is an inarticulate fellowship more sweet than words. The little child can sit all day long beside its busy mother and, although few words are spoken on either side, and both are busy, the one at his absorbing play, the other at her engrossing work, yet both are in perfect fellowship. He knows that she is there, and she knows that he is all right.
So the saint and the Saviour can go on for hours in the silent fellowship of love, and he be busy about the most common things, and yet conscious that every little thing he does is touched with the complexion of His presence, and the sense of His approval and blessing.
And then, when pressed with burdens and troubles too complicated to put into words and too mysterious to tell or understand, how sweet it is to fall back into His blessed arms, and just sob out the sorrow that we cannot speak!
I found this to be really comforting. I always find it so wonderful, how that when I read Scripture, the Lord just expunges all my stress and replaces it with such soothing comfort. I wish I could describe how thankful I am for that and how much He just takes care of me. Today, I am just so tired. I couldn't really pray anything good. Sometimes, that's how it is. And I have been frustrated that I'm not spending as much time with the Lord as I'd like - I never feel as if I follow Him properly. I look forward to His helping me with that - get better at it. But, this reading today reminded me that He already knows all my troubled mixed up state, and is praying through me better than I can do it. He knows what I mean. And silent fellowship with Him can be just as sweet. It brought me a lot of peace. It's something I already knew ... but sometimes, I forget what I know and it's good to be reminded.
Bow down Your ear, O Lord, hear me;
For I am poor and needy.
2 Preserve my life, for I am holy;
You are my God;
Save Your servant who trusts in You!
3 Be merciful to me, O Lord,
For I cry to You all day long.
4 Rejoice the soul of Your servant,
For to You, O Lord, I lift up my soul.
5 For You, Lord, are good, and ready to forgive,
And abundant in mercy to all those who call upon You.
6 Give ear, O Lord, to my prayer;
And attend to the voice of my supplications.
7 In the day of my trouble I will call upon You,
For You will answer me.
8 Among the gods there is none like You, O Lord;
Nor are there any works like Your works.
9 All nations whom You have made
Shall come and worship before You, O Lord,
And shall glorify Your name.
10 For You are great, and do wondrous things;
You alone are God.
11 Teach me Your way, O Lord;
I will walk in Your truth;
Unite my heart to fear Your name.
12 I will praise You, O Lord my God, with all my heart,
And I will glorify Your name forevermore.
13 For great is Your mercy toward me,
And You have delivered my soul from the depths of Sheol.
14 O God, the proud have risen against me,
And a mob of violent men have sought my life,
And have not set You before them.
15 But You, O Lord, are a God full of compassion, and gracious,
Longsuffering and abundant in mercy and truth.
16 Oh, turn to me, and have mercy on me!
Give Your strength to Your servant,
And save the son of Your maidservant.
17 Show me a sign for good,
That those who hate me may see it and be ashamed,
Because You, Lord, have helped me and comforted me.
Comment: I just prayed this to the Lord. He's the one who perfects and cleanses me. It felt about right for today.
Oh come, let us sing to the Lord!
Let us shout joyfully to the Rock of our salvation.
2 Let us come before His presence with thanksgiving;
Let us shout joyfully to Him with psalms.
3 For the Lord is the great God,
And the great King above all gods.
4 In His hand are the deep places of the earth;
The heights of the hills are His also.
5 The sea is His, for He made it;
And His hands formed the dry land.
6 Oh come, let us worship and bow down;
Let us kneel before the Lord our Maker.
7 For He is our God,
And we are the people of His pasture,
And the sheep of His hand.
Today, if you will hear His voice:
8 “Do not harden your hearts, as in the rebellion,[a]
As in the day of trial[b] in the wilderness,
9 When your fathers tested Me;
They tried Me, though they saw My work.
10 For forty years I was grieved with that generation,
And said, ‘It is a people who go astray in their hearts,
And they do not know My ways.’
11 So I swore in My wrath,
‘They shall not enter My rest.’”
Comment: I love this Psalm. It's beautiful. Verses 6-7 have been made into a song. Well. That's not unique - Psalms are songs - but it's one of my favorites.
Psalm 115 (KJV)
Not unto us, O Lord, not unto us, but unto thy name give glory, for thy mercy, and for thy truth's sake.
2 Wherefore should the heathen say, Where is now their God?
3 But our God is in the heavens: he hath done whatsoever he hath pleased.
4 Their idols are silver and gold, the work of men's hands.
5 They have mouths, but they speak not: eyes have they, but they see not:
6 They have ears, but they hear not: noses have they, but they smell not:
7 They have hands, but they handle not: feet have they, but they walk not: neither speak they through their throat.
8 They that make them are like unto them; so is every one that trusteth in them.
9 O Israel, trust thou in the Lord: he is their help and their shield.
10 O house of Aaron, trust in the Lord: he is their help and their shield.
11 Ye that fear the Lord, trust in the Lord: he is their help and their shield.
12 The Lord hath been mindful of us: he will bless us; he will bless the house of Israel; he will bless the house of Aaron.
13 He will bless them that fear the Lord, both small and great.
14 The Lord shall increase you more and more, you and your children.
15 Ye are blessed of the Lord which made heaven and earth.
16 The heaven, even the heavens, are the Lord's: but the earth hath he given to the children of men.
17 The dead praise not the Lord, neither any that go down into silence.
18 But we will bless the Lord from this time forth and for evermore. Praise the Lord.
Comment: This Psalm is special to me, especially verses 9-15. There was one point, what seems like a long time ago, that I was talking to different people about the Salaita lab and different labs... I think it was a few weeks after the Tech visit. I knew I was supposed to be in the Salaita lab at that point. And I knew that the Lord had answered all my prayers in directing me to Khalid. But it seemed too good to be true. And one thing someone said just filled me with terror that Khalid would change and start being unpleaseable, push me and act like, well, Bijoy. This used to be something that scared me to death. I wasn't sure I could trust anyone I worked for not to turn into Bijoy or even imagine anything else was possible. I couldn't believe that the Lord would really do what He had told me He was doing, and was praying about this in terrible anguish of soul. But, He gave me this Psalm, verses 9-15, and I felt as if He'd told me that He'd blessed me, and wasn't going to suddenly turn it into a curse or offer it and then take it away and say - HA! Gotcha! Which is what I was terrified about. It was incredibly comforting. I still find this Psalm tremendously comforting. These days, I just realized thinking about it, that fear is completely gone, even the whispers of it. Somewhat surprising. I think the Lord knows what He's doing. I trust Him. And I've gotten to the point that I trust Khalid thoroughly. I'm not scared of him any more.
Streams in the Desert, October 31st
This is the blog for what God has been teaching me, prayer adventures, quotes from men of faith, spiritual books, songs and detailing the amazing roller coaster ride adventure as I live with Him! I reserve the right to be wrong. I am always learning.