Deliverance from pride and selfishness
“Before I was afflicted, I went astray, but now I keep Your Word.” (Ps. 119:67) Living in the land of affliction and sorrow washes this world’s crud and dust out of your eyeballs. You begin to realize how vain and empty many of your pursuits are. It’s so easy to lose focus on God’s Word and what He desires for your life.
The world of the needy and broken, once perhaps invisible to you, tugs at your heart. Christ’s commands are clear — don’t be oblivious to the prisoners, the ill-treated, the poor, the fatherless, and the widows! This is the short version of the list.
Through our tears, we see the needs we never noticed before. The beauty of Christ and His love for the straying, the needy, and the broken — for those of His Bride living outside the covenant church community — shines in His Word.
Deliverance from depression and despair
The Psalms are chock-full of David’s many pleas for help in life’s struggles. Just start reading Psalms 3-7 for starters. The list is SO long. If I counted, the cries for help may account for more than 50% of the Psalms.
Life was so hard to face, that David even calls the LORD the “Lifter up of my head”.
Do you know what it’s like to not want to lift your head off of your pillow? I mean, you really, really don’t even want to get out of bed and face another day.
If you’ve never experienced this feeling, be grateful! Grief upon grief blindsided me with these feelings. Until then, I never understood what David meant describing the LORD as the “Lifter of my head.”
Perhaps your chronically ill spouse can describe these feelings in detail. Mine has. It’s a dark, deep pit that feels bottomless. No earthly hope of normal. No true recovery or semblance of wellness in sight. Prolonged pain, agony, and sorrow feel inescapable.
Yet, this week I’m delighting in my patches of daffodils and anticipation of a newborn niece. I revel in the wonder of Heaven and Home, and those waiting for me just beyond this life. Feelings of joy gurgling out like a frozen stream melting in the spring sunshine — LORD, you amaze me!
I’m living proof that you can find JOY in God even in grief and sorrow (give yourself time, dear one.) Better yet, Jesus is LIVING proof that all the powers of death and hell cannot suppress our living Savior and His plan from eternity.
So many of the Psalms start in despair and end in praise! I highly encourage you to envelop yourself in this portion of God’s Word when your life is absolutely horrifically awful. That’s how David described his life at times, just sayin’.
The Fall and the Curse — we still smart and groan waiting for the final chapter and “Thy will to be done on earth as it is in heaven”.
Deliverance from the “strife of tongues”
My “survivor” friend who has lived through two beastly awful lung transplants said it best. Expect people to say stupid things when you’re hurting. It’s true.
We’re all born with the “tongue of fools” (see the Proverbs for a full description), and need the prayer, “teach us to number our days that we may apply our hearts to wisdom.” Social media proves this point. Every. Single. Minute.
Another friend, a young mother of four, is dealing with her young husband’s stage four cancer diagnosis. As she put it, “the fixers” come out of the woodwork.
Let me clarify. Yes, yes, and YES! Please bend over backwards to help your friends suffering through illnesses and loss. Help with their needs in a hands-on way. Encourage them from the WORD, too.
But be gentle. Be humble. Be kind.
You cannot fathom every detail of their situation and know the best possible solution to their problems. It’s not even your job to “fix” their problems. Your health solution might work. Please don’t be offended if your friend decides to take another route.
Deliverance from evil (the evil within and the Evil One)
Evil within rears its ugly head in so many ways. Frustration and resentment of your suffering, anyone? WHY is a legitimate question, but not one that we are always going to get an answer for. Again, the Psalms show deliverance from despair to grateful praise, from fear to trust, from doubt to hope, and from sorrow to joy.
Jesus also prayed for His disciples and future generations of believers in John 17:
15″ I do not pray that You should take them out of the world, but that You should keep them from the evil one.”
Deliverance from trouble
Trouble and illness are evil twins. They walk hand-in-hand. Sometimes you cannot even describe the troubles accurately to anyone. I’m so thankful for the intercession of the Holy Spirit who prays with us and for us before the Throne of Grace.
So many unintelligible prayers I’ve sent up saying, God, YOU alone know the depths of this trouble and have the keys to deliverance in Your hands. I can’t even figure out exactly what to ask for, except for this: please help!
Deliverance from false friends
What is truly beautiful is when the family of God stands by you in suffering! David had faithful followers who fled with him and supported him in the wilderness, too.
Deliverance into our Eternal Home – “I Can Only Imagine”
Back to that conversation about “normal”. Chronic illness completely robs a life of many forms of normalcy.
So does being born with special needs. So does a serious car accident or other traumatic injury. Broken families, broken lives… will the sorrow never end?
How about this lovely word picture of the Good Shepherd finally leading His sheep to their Eternal Home?
“Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life, and I will dwell in the House of the LORD forever.”