How to Have Hope in Hard Times–Psalm 27
In the letter of Second Timothy, Paul warns that Christians will go through times of persecution (2 Timothy 3:12). Persecution can of course come in various forms: trials, illness, financial setbacks, broken relationships and even outright malicious treatment. Persecution can came at anytime from anywhere.
I have found a powerful source of strength and comfort in the words of Psalm 27. It is my hope that this incredible prayer from the pen of King David will encourage and instruct you on how to further seek the Lord’s face when the enemy attacks.
How to Have Hope in Hard Times–Psalm 27
1 The Lord is my light and my salvation— whom shall I fear? The Lord is the stronghold of my life—of whom shall I be afraid?
The Book of Psalms contains strong statements of faith and facts about God’s mighty power. David begins this prayer acknowledging who God is and His power.
2 When the wicked advance against me to devour me, it is my enemies and my foes who will stumble and fall. Though an army besiege me, my heart will not fear; though war break out against me, even then I will be confident.
We have to realize that things or people will come against us. The Bible never promises us a life free from trouble. These verses admit to that but also remind us that the words of Isaiah 54:17 are true: “no weapon formed against us will prosper.” David knew that even a war was not too much for our God to handle.
4 One thing I ask from the Lord, this only do I seek: that I may dwell in the House of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze on the beauty of the Lord and to seek Him in His Temple.
5 For in the day of trouble He will keep me safe in His dwelling; He will hide me in the shelter of His sacred tent and set me high upon a rock. 6 Then my head will be exalted above the enemies who surround me; at His sacred tent I will sacrifice with shouts of joy; I will sing and make music to the Lord.
I love that David’s request was to dwell in the House of the Lord! Putting God first in our lives and drawing comfort from His presence builds our faith and gives us confidence; especially when our circumstances don’t make sense.
7 Hear my voice when I call, Lord; be merciful to me and answer me. 8 My heart says of You, “Seek His face!” Your face, Lord, I will seek. 9 Do not hide your face from me, do not turn Your servant away in anger; You have been my helper. Do not reject me or forsake me, God my Savior.
It is said of King David, “He (David) had a heart for the Lord.” Spending time in prayer, Scripture and communion with God turns our heart towards His. That heart for God keeps us seeking Him in every (and all) situation(s). God is always faithful and never turns His back on His children when they truly and sincerely seek His way.
10 Though my father and mother forsake me, the Lord will receive me. 11 Teach me Your way, Lord; lead me in a straight path because of my oppressors. 12 Do not turn me over to the desire of my foes, for false witnesses rise up against me, spouting malicious accusations.
Sadly, we live in a world where even those closest to us can turn their backs on us. That lack of support can make our pain even greater. David experienced this and teaches us in this Psalm that even if the whole world turns on us — God would be there for us.
13 I remain confident of this: I will see the goodness of the Lord in the land of the living. 14 Wait for the Lord; be strong and take heart and wait for the Lord.
There’s a song by rock musician Tom Petty that says “the waiting is the hardest part.” Those words become truer when we are in times of trial and tribulation; when we are being persecuted. Waiting is not easy or comfortable. Living in a society that wants instant gratification or relief has made us impatient. But we are wise to emulate the great prophet David. He trusted always in God’s perfect plan and perfect timing.
Trouble will come. That is a given. But our God is able to overcome any trouble, and that is a fact! Trust Him.
Written by Dean Marini