What help do you need from God?
I saw a few minutes of James Cameron’s epic movie, “Titanic,” recently. The music by Celine Dion is one thing that captures my interest, along with the historic tale of 1912. I always find myself watching a few minutes of Titanic when I come across it on TV, especially the end of the movie when so much is at stake.
The captain orders the communication specialist to send out a “Mayday,” a desperate call for help. This radio signal word is the international message of distress, of grave and imminent danger. Anyone hearing the mayday call knows that someone is in serious trouble and may not survive without some immediate intervention. Sadly, no one was able to respond as quickly as those on the Titanic needed. An estimated 1,517 people (832 passengers and 685 crew) perished in the disaster.
Read Psalm 40.
The author David, pens a song, a prayer for help when troubles emerge and seek to overwhelm him. He does not specify the causes of distress, but David suggests they are a result of his sin (verse 12). They seem to be intensified by the gloating of his enemies. Yet David begins the prayer by praising God for His past mercies (verses 1-5), and includes a testimony of his own faithfulness to God (verses 6-10.
Then we come to his cry for help in verses 11-17. David appears to be sinking below the waves of trouble. On the one hand he is suffering from his own disobedience to God (verse 12: My sins have overtaken me and I cannot see). One another he is afraid for his safety (verse 14: May all who seek my life be put to shame and confusion). In both cases he pleads with God for immediate rescue (verse 13 and 17: O Lord, come quickly to help me…O my God, do not delay).
If we are honest, some of the desperate situations we find ourselves in are a result of our own choice and action. But some are not. Even if our mistakes and utter disobedience put us in dire straits, we can still turn to the Lord for help.
It is difficult to imagine a person resisting rescue after calling for help. Yet I can think of a few times when I refused to accept God’s terms of having to yield to Him in order to be lifted out of the mess I was in. How about you?
The key to being rescued when danger is threatening and our need is evident, is if we will pursue God’s plan to walk in His ways. Like the psalmist David in verse 11, we need to pray, “O Lord, do not withhold Your mercy from me. May Your love and Your truth always protect me.”
Keep in mind that we often look to God for immediate rescue, and God is capable of that. But He also wants us to depend on Him to be our help and deliverer as we seek after Him every day.
The word “Mayday” essentially means, “help me.” Grow devotionally. Psalm 40:11-17 is a spiritual Mayday. When we cry out to God for His help each day, expect Him to respond as we yield to His way. Trusting God for help and obedience to Him are equal parts of being rescued.
Love is a verb,
©2019 by Mike Olejarz