Day 16: Promises of Prayer – God Hears and Answers

1 Hear me, Lord, my plea is just; listen to my cry. Hear my prayer— it does not rise from deceitful lips. 2 Let my vindication come from you; may your eyes see what is right. 3 Though you probe my heart, though you examine me at night and test me, you will find that I have planned no evil; my mouth has not transgressed. 4 Though people tried to bribe me, I have kept myself from the ways of the violent through what your lips have commanded. 5 My steps have held to your paths; my feet have not stumbled. 6 I call on you, my God, for you will answer me; turn your ear to me and hear my prayer. 7 Show me the wonders of your great love, you who save by your right hand those who take refuge in you from their foes. 8 Keep me as the apple of your eye; hide me in the shadow of your wings 9 from the wicked who are out to destroy me, from my mortal enemies who surround me. 10 They close up their callous hearts, and their mouths speak with arrogance. 11 They have tracked me down, they now surround me, with eyes alert, to throw me to the ground. 12 They are like a lion hungry for prey, like a fierce lion crouching in cover. 13 Rise up, Lord, confront them, bring them down; with your sword rescue me from the wicked. 14 By your hand save me from such people, Lord, from those of this world whose reward is in this life. May what you have stored up for the wicked fill their bellies; may their children gorge themselves on it, and may there be leftovers for their little ones. 15 As for me, I will be vindicated and will see your face; when I awake, I will be satisfied with seeing your likeness.

Psalm 17

Listen

What is God saying to you through the scriptures today?

Reflect

Throughout the life of David, especially while he was younger and being pursued by King Saul, he faced and overcame many challenges. While we don’t know the circumstances of this particular Psalm, we can tell that David is in the midst of a dangerous situation and is praying to God for rescue. Like David, one of the most frequent times that we go to God is when we’re facing difficulties in life and finally turn to God after everything else we’ve tried hasn’t worked. At least, I know that’s been true in my life, and I bet there have been times in yours that you finally turned to God as a last resort.

One important aspect that we see in David’s prayer as he faces difficulty is that he doesn’t pray hoping God will hear and answer, but knowing that God will. We also see that David is trusting God with the response; he’s faced lions and enemies before and overcame them, so he certainly has the ability and experience, but trusts God to protect him and guide his steps. How might your prayers change if you prayed knowing God hears and responds?

Pray

God, examine my heart and mind for anything offensive to you; forgive me of my sin. I pray today knowing that you listen and respond. I trust you to show up in the storms of life with your unfailing love and to protect me from those that would seek to harm me. Amen.

Do

We see in Psalm 17 that David starts his prayer having already examined his thoughts and heart for sin. Sin can often be a barrier that prevents us from experiencing God’s best in our lives. Set aside a few minutes before you pray this week to examine your life for any unconfessed sin that you need to repent of.

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