One of the greatest things about reading the Bible in chronological order for me so far is that mixed in Chronicles and 1 & 2 Samuel (David’s story) are the Psalms he wrote. They are placed in proper sequence so that you read the Psalm that’s in direct response to his current circumstances. As we meandered through his rise to kingship and fall to sin Psalm 86 caught my eye.
On those days when you aren’t sure what to pray, overcome with grief, busyness, circumstances and you can’t think straight but need to be on your knees talking to God. . . . this is just what we need. Psalm 86 (called David’s Prayer) is a diamond in the rough and covers almost all we need from the Lord on a daily basis. I call it my “God, please” prayer.
Take a look at what David asks of the Lord and see how much it relates to what we need ourselves.
God, please . . .answer me (v.1), protect my life (v.2), be gracious to me (v.3), bring joy to my life (v. 4), make me rich in faithful love (v. 5), listen to my plea (v.6), answer me (v.7), teach me your way (v.11), give me an undivided mind to fear your name (v.11), turn to me and be gracious to me (v. 16), give me your strength (v.16), show me a sign of your goodness, help and comfort me (v.17).
My pen and heart went crazy as I read this Psalm. There have been so many times in my life when my heart and mind have been paralyzed from grief, sadness and despair. So much so, that I wasn’t able to pray as I felt I needed to and here it is, right here in Psalms written out perfectly. All the provisions and things we desire from the Lord to equip us with and all we crave to receive from Him. So, next time you are in need of a little prayer direction, look to the Psalms. For David surely experienced almost every emotion, circumstance and sin we could imagine and has a prayer for that!
1 Hear me, Lord, and answer me, for I am poor and needy. 2 Guard my life, for I am faithful to you; save your servant who trusts in you. You are my God; 3 have mercy on me, Lord, for I call to you all day long. 4 Bring joy to your servant, Lord, for I put my trust in you. 5 You, Lord, are forgiving and good, abounding in love to all who call to you. 6 Hear my prayer, Lord; listen to my cry for mercy. 7 When I am in distress, I call to you, because you answer me. 8 Among the gods there is none like you, Lord; no deeds can compare with yours. 9 All the nations you have made will come and worship before you, Lord; they will bring glory to your name. 10 For you are great and do marvelous deeds; you alone are God. 11 Teach me your way, Lord, that I may rely on your faithfulness; give me an undivided heart, that I may fear your name. 12 I will praise you, Lord my God, with all my heart; I will glorify your name forever. 13 For great is your love toward me; you have delivered me from the depths, from the realm of the dead. 14 Arrogant foes are attacking me, O God; ruthless people are trying to kill me—they have no regard for you. 15 But you, Lord, are a compassionate and gracious God, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness. 16 Turn to me and have mercy on me; show your strength in behalf of your servant; save me, because I serve you just as my mother did. 17 Give me a sign of your goodness, that my enemies may see it and be put to shame, for you, Lord, have helped me and comforted me.