“I pour out my complaint before him; I tell my trouble before him.” (Psalm 142:2)
We know there are psalms of lament and this is one of them. The question is, how did David and others get the nerve to complain to God. I dare say must of us were raised to fear God and to think we should only say positive things to Him. We may find it hard in our tradition of religion to stand before God and fuss about our fate, not in any serious vein anyhow.
David was in the cave when he wrote this, and things were not good. David felt he was trying to do the right thing, and yet the situation was slowly deteriorating. When a person expects to be rewarded for good behavior and finds themselves in worse trouble, there is a natural tendency to ask questions.
This is not to say that David or we should be blaming God for what’s wrong with us and the world. The fact that things go against us does not imply that God has it in for us. The world is what it is, and even David knew that. In spite of what we think things don’t always work out well for the wicked.
What to learn from the idea of lamenting. One, crying out is not an unusual response to feelings of unfairness. Two, God hasn’t indicated that He’s upset when we question Him about our life. Three, we need to tell someone our troubles and why not God, especially if we feel He is responsible or could change the situation.
Task for Today: God is your father and your friend, and so you can talk to Him from either viewpoint. Be respectful, keeping in mind who is who in the conversation. Don’t hide things from God as that is not only counterproductive but impossible. You have two interceders who take your complaint before God, which means you have some insulation. The Holy Spirit rewords your complaint to accurately reflect what is in your heart but which you lack words for. Christ intercedes on your behalf. He speaks for you and in your defense. Be honest with God, and if you have a real beef, express it.