Hope for Undeserved Grace

Meditating on Psalm 143.

Hear my prayer, O Lord,
Give ear to my supplications!
In Your faithfulness answer me,
And in Your righteousness.
2 Do not enter into judgment with Your servant,
For in Your sight no one living is righteous. (vv. 1-2)

If you asked me what my most favorite psalms were, I would readily answer, “Psalms 91 and 23”. But you know what? I found out that meditating on each of the psalms brings us different blessings, each unique and beautiful and powerful in its own right. Such is Psalm 143. Each of the stanzas seems to speak of different themes, but all in all, they are prayers of a man who knew his God intimately, had an intimate relationship with Him, and knew his own frailty and need for grace. Psalm 143 is a collection of short prayers of a man who hoped and clung on the grace and mercy of God. And I know that in times of my great weakness and need, I had prayed them, too, in varying words and purposes, but the intensity was pretty much the same.

Psalm 143 is a plea for underserved grace. For it is always really that: the grace bestowed on us every waking moment by the Father is undeserved. For how can we receive healing for our broken hearts and bodies if He demands first our perfection? No. Our wholeness always comes from Jesus’ perfect love not ours. “…By His stripes we are healed” (Is. 53;5); “But God demonstrates His own love toward us, in that while we were still sinners, Christ died for us” (Rom. 5:8). If He entered into judgment with us, what would become of us? What would we receive from Him as answer to our most earnest prayers? But God, in His unfailing love and faithfulness, receives our prayers and answers them, when we come before Him in humble acknowledgement of our weaknesses and imperfections. It’s all His grace.

I spread out my hands to You;
My soul longs for You like a thirsty land. Selah

7 Answer me speedily, O Lord;
My spirit fails!
Do not hide Your face from me,
Lest I be like those who go down into the pit. (vv. 6-7)

Have you longed for Jesus’ like that? Yearned for Him and needed Him so much you actually reached out your hand before you, not seeing Him, yet believing that He’s always near, near enough to feel His comforting presence. Near enough to expect Him to take your proffered hand. I have. And I believe that we should always have that fervent love for Him.

Cause me to hear Your lovingkindness in the morning,
For in You do I trust;
Cause me to know the way in which I should walk,
For I lift up my soul to You. (v. 8)

Psalm 143 is a reminder to not go ahead of God’s plan for us and pursue our own plans without acknowledging Him first or knowing His will. But it’s wisdom to seek His face and lovingkindness in the morning and surrender ourselves to His leading. Always to His leading. For that is the only way to life eternal.

(Photo courtesy of my friend Perla Frisberg).

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Journey with Jesus,