With my voice I cry out to the Lord;
with my voice I plead for mercy to the Lord.
I pour out my complaint before him;
I tell my trouble before him.
When my spirit faints within me,
you know my way!
In the path where I walk
they have hidden a trap for me.
This past month, I have been meditating on Psalm 142, and more specifically David’s words in verse 3: When my spirit faints within me, you know my way! I am not hiding in a cave like David, I really have nothing to complain about, and I can not think of any outlandish troubles on the horizon. Sure, there are petty annoyances and continual confessions that cause me to seek God’s mercy. But, I am not praying as fervently as David in this Psalm or as Paul in the book of Romans:
Meanwhile, the moment we get tired in the waiting, God’s Spirit is right
alongside helping us along. If we don’t know how or what to pray, it
doesn’t matter. He does our praying in and for us, making prayer out of
our wordless sighs, our aching groans. He knows us far better than we
know ourselves, knows our pregnant condition, and keeps us present
before God. That’s why we can be so sure that every detail in our lives
of love for God is worked into something good. ~Romans 8:26-28 (MSG)
And yet, I am still drawn to the verse: When my spirit faints within me, you know my way! I cannot help but think of the words Jesus spoke to those with troubled hearts:
“I am the way, and the truth, and the life. No one comes to the Father
except through me. If you had known me, you would have known my
Father also. From now on you do know him and have seen him.” ~John 14:6-7
Perhaps my heart is troubled and my spirit is fainting even more than I want to admit to myself or others. Perhaps I need reassurance that God’s spirit is alongside me and pointing out the hidden traps on my way. More importantly, perhaps it is when everything appears “fine” on the outside, I need to pay attention to the inner workings of my soul and the way I am praying.
David reminds us that prayer opens our lives up to God and Paul’s words make it hard to forget that prayer also opens God’s life up to us.
No matter what state my spirit or your spirit is in, God knows our way, and is helping us know the way to pray.
Thank You, Lord for knowing my way.