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Psalm 102:1-17 (NIV)
A prayer of an afflicted person who has grown weak and pours out a lament before the Lord.
1 Hear my prayer, Lord; let my cry for help come to you. 2 Do not hide your face from me when I am in distress. Turn your ear to me; when I call, answer me quickly. 3 For my days vanish like smoke; my bones burn like glowing embers. 4 My heart is blighted and withered like grass; I forget to eat my food. 5 In my distress I groan aloud and am reduced to skin and bones. 6 I am like a desert owl, like an owl among the ruins. 7 I lie awake; I have become like a bird alone on a roof. 8 All day long my enemies taunt me; those who rail against me use my name as a curse. 9 For I eat ashes as my food and mingle my drink with tears 10 because of your great wrath, for you have taken me up and thrown me aside. 11 My days are like the evening shadow; I wither away like grass. 12 But you, Lord, sit enthroned forever; your renown endures through all generations. 13 You will arise and have compassion on Zion, for it is time to show favor to her; the appointed time has come. 14 For her stones are dear to your servants; her very dust moves them to pity. 15 The nations will fear the name of the Lord, all the kings of the earth will revere your glory. 16 For the Lord will rebuild Zion and appear in his glory. 17 He will respond to the prayer of the destitute; he will not despise their plea.
The Bible is filled with prayers like Psalm 102 that show us when we are suffering, in pain, and when life is really beating us up that we can pray to God and be honest about how we feel. Verse 4 shows that the psalm writer is so filled with anguish that he does not even want to eat! Yet, the hope of this Psalm is rooted in God’s character. From the beginning of creation all the way to the cross, we see that God has never abandoned us and God “regards the prayer of the destitute”. At the heart of our faith in Jesus is the hope that God knows us and hears us and will respond in love. Let us continue to pray for healing and for all our needs, not because we are good, but because in Jesus, God has declared His love for us.