Arguing with God: The Past

by Bethany

Highlighted Text: Psalm 68:7-10
M’Cheyne Text: Ezekiel 21; Psalm 68

Last Friday, we wrote about filling our prayers with arguments before the Lord. This week, we model prayers that do that. [1]

Pre-Prayer Worship: Come Holy One [2]
(by Young Oceans with Eric Marshall of Trinity Grace Chelsea)

Lord,

Meet with us this morning. Awaken us with a song of praise in our hearts and on our lips. Give us a vision for service in our cities. Incline our hearts to the Word and not to getting gain. Fill us with your Spirit of wisdom, joy and righteousness. Make us happy children, spouses, parents, friends, citizens and colleagues. Bind our hearts to one another and bind our hearts to you through the new covenant that is sealed by the blood of Jesus Christ our Lord.

As we look at the world around us, we see great turmoil. Not only is there confusion in our own country, as we prayed about yesterday, there is disorder throughout the nations. We think of Libya and the four embassy officials who died last week in a riot that has spilled over into Egypt and Yemen [3]. We mourn for the more than 200,000 Syrian refugees who have fled from civil war and are living in poorly resourced camps in Jordan, Lebanon, Turkey and Iraqi Kurdistan [4].

In light of these circumstances, we plead the past to you. We pray, as David did: “O God, when you went out before your people, when you marched through the wilderness, the earth quaked, the heavens poured down rain … Rain in abundance, O God, you shed abroad; you restored your inheritance as it languished; your flock found a dwelling in it; in your goodness, O God, you provided for the needy” [5]. Do not leave your work unfinished. What you have begun, do not fail to complete. You are an unchanging God, who will do in the future what you have done in the past. For you do not turn from your purpose and cannot be thwarted in your design. [6]

Therefore, go before us, as you did with the Hebrews. March through the wilderness and shake the earth. Cause the heavens to pour down rain in abundance. In your goodness, provide for the needy, displaced, homeless, and weak. Make yourself known to them. For you are a God who cares for victims of violence and oppression. You spread your cloak over refugees and foreigners. For your people were aliens in a land not their own and you sustained them. We were aliens without an inheritance to your promises and you adopted us through Jesus. Therefore, heal your people and use us as your hands and feet.

Amen.

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Footnotes

[1] See 843 Acres. “How to Argue with God.” 14 September 2012.  |  [2] Courtesy of Young Oceans with Eric Marshall, worship leader at Trinity Grace Chelsea. To order entire album, see iTunes or Amazon.com.  |  [3] David Kirkpatrick and Steven Lee Myers. “Libya Attack Brings Challenges for U.S.” New York Times. 12 September 2012; CBS News. “U.S. braces for new violence over anti-Muslim film.” 14 September 2012.  |  [4] Wikipedia, “Refugees of the Syrian Civil War.” See also BBC Middle East. Video: “Angelina Jolie visits Syrian refugees in Jordan.” AP. “Angelina Jolie visits Syrian refugees in Turkey in role as UNHCR envoy.” 13 September 2012.  |  [5] Psalm 68:7-10 ESV  |  [6] See Charles Spurgeon. “Effective Prayer.” From Metropolitan Tabernacle Pulpit, Vol. 12, No. 700. (for more examples of prayer like this).

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2 Comments to “Arguing with God: The Past”

  1. There seems to be no end to your ability to worship, love, and glorify God. Thank you !
    And wow also to added worship songs!
    Xo

    • MJ: I love your encouraging heart! Thank you so much for your faithful support – and for your husband’s, too! Prayers of joy and a song of worship on your lips today. BLJ

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