1: "Out of the depths I cry to you, O Lord." - When we sink into the depths of despair and isolation, God is the only place to turn.
2: "Lord, hear my voice! Let your ears be attentive to the voice of my supplications!" - This despair is so deep that we are not even sure God can hear us from the depth and darkness in which we find ourselves.
3: "If you, O Lord should mark iniquities, Lord, who could stand?" - Our sins hurl us into the darkness, separating us from God's love. No wonder we despair. When we realize what we have done then standing before God becomes a nearly impossible task.
4: "But there is forgiveness with you, so that you may be revered." - God does not keep track of our sins, instead, He forgives and blots out their memory so that we can stand before Him and worship Him.
5: "I wait for the Lord, my soul waits, and in His word I hope." - When we remember God's steadfast love, hope springs eternal.
7: "O Israel, hope in the Lord! For with the Lord there is steadfast love, and with Him is great power to redeem." - No matter what we face in life, this promise from God is always available when we turn to Him and focus on His redeeming love.
Points to Contemplate:
Are you overwhelmed, distressed, and lost in the darkness?
Have you ever reached the depths of despair where you are engulfed and over-whelmed by your circumstances? Have you found it difficult to breathe as the worries of life pour into you with each breath you attempt to take? Can you relate to the words of the psalmist, "Out of the depths I cry to you, O Lord"? Where else is there to turn? Who, but God, is always there in times like these?
Are your sins the cause of your despair? The psalmist states that sin is the root cause of all separation from God. If you have been persecuted, victimized or wronged, is it the act against you that has caused your overpowering depression, or is it your tendency to wallow in pity and self-righteousness? Do you see how turning to God in these circumstances begins to take your focus from your despair and point it towards God, instead? Does this reveal the importance of praising God in all circumstances, especially in times of sorrow, distress, and need?
Are you hopeful? Are you filled with the passion that God loves you and forgives you? Are you overwhelmed with the realization that God has forgiven you of all sins? That He holds a special place in His heart for you; yes, even you? As you grasp the understanding of what God is doing for you and as you read this psalm out loud again and again, do you find your heart bursting with His love? Do you feel hope returning? Are you lifted by the promise of His redemption? Do you shout for joy? Promise of the Gospel:
It is during times of despair when we can feel the most isolated and removed from God. The psalmist reminds us of God's redeeming love, a love that reaches down through our maze of iniquities and lifts us into His glory. It is when our focus shifts towards God and when "(we) wait for the Lord, (our) soul waits, and in His word (we) hope," then redemption is found.