Anguish when shared
“How long must I struggle with anguish in my soul, with sorrow in my heart each day? Turn to me and answer me, O Lord my God!” — Psalm 13:1a, 3a
We can say the worst things to those we love. When all is quiet after the big event and you’re in the car together alone, That Whole Other Side, so well buried all day long, roars and rips not to the public who may nip and bite—or actually does nip and bite—but to the one who fills your world with love.
I’ve done this with God. I’m the nipper and biter. My guard is down. My emotions are exposed and God hears That Whole Other Side, the one I hide from the world that is raw or hurt, lost or disappointed. Like author David here, I am all-out crushed, and God hears about it.
I weep at my words after the rant. I hang my head in shame after the one-sided battle which is exactly the one David hurls at God in the verses above. I beg for forgiveness. I receive it.
God is silent because God loves. Specifically, God loves enough to let me storm and stomp and do what I need God to do, which is to listen to me get it all out.
I can turn to no one else with this mess. It’s just us. As if we were driving home after the big event, God hears my worst. And then, when that storm passes—and it always does—I can speak with the certainty of David who says in verse 5 in the same psalm, “But I trust in your unfailing love. I will rejoice because you have rescued me.”
God has rescued me. And God will continue to rescue me not because I’m holy. Rather, God rescues me because I need rescuing. I bring my whole life to God—the spills, the messes, the heartbreaks, the angst…the really ugly stuff… and then, like verse 5 which you just heard, comes verse 6: “I will sing to the Lord because he is good to me.”
PRAYER: Ah, these mini dramas, God! Smooth sailing would be nice! The sailing thing doesn’t fit with the metaphor of the car thing at all, but You know what I mean because You know me and let me be me so that I can sing—literally sing—to You. Help me hear—and encourage—the songs others sing to You. Amen.