Psalms 87-88, Romans 13 • Key Verse: Psalm 88:1
The words “and they lived happily ever after” are usually found at the end of fairy tales, We read the last line of the story, sigh at the nice ending, close the book and return to the reality of a world without fairy-tale endings.
The truth is, sometimes life is fine, and sometimes it isn’t. Sometimes problems get solved, and sometimes they don’t. Hopeless should not be found in the Christian’s vocabulary because we do have hope in Christ. It’s not an “I hope so” hope but a certain hope. Still, there are times when hope dims.
Psalm 88 is a prayer that begins simply enough: “O Lord, the God who saves me, day and night I cry out before you.” We read on expecting to find the usual—God hears, God saves, the psalmist praises. But not this time. Instead we find ourselves reading the saddest of the psalms. Notice all the times the writer speaks of death.
He writes not of the death of others but of feeling as if he is about to join the dead. His situation is so dismal that his closest friend is the darkness (v, 18),.
There is no “happily ever after” to this story. The psalm is not a fairy tale but a tale of real life. Sometimes our situations will look hopeless. We feel like we are about to die. Our prayers seem to go unanswered.
So what then? We do what we find in verse 1. We pray and keep praying. This psalm calls us to a higher faith, one that continues when the darkness closes in on us.
The next psalm begins with words of hope, but until we get out of the dark times, we must keep praying. Are any ongoing situations weighing you down today? Don’t give up. Ask God for the continued faith you need to trust Him.
Woodrow Kroll & Tony Beckett