‘Hear me, Lord, and answer me, for I am poor and needy.’ Psalm 86.1
This seems to be a desperate plea from someone in great need, but we can find real encouragement in it for us when we too are in a time of need.
The first encouragement is that our right to ask for God’s help is not dependent upon our own goodness or on what we think we deserve. The only criteria for coming to him seems to be that we are in need. It is easy to forget this and to mistakenly think that we can somehow earn God’s favour, when the truth is that everything about his dealings with us is based on grace – undeserved love. This is how we came to God in the first place and it will always be what opens the door for him to act – his free, undeserved and abundant love.
This leads on to our second cause for encouragement. When we are in need we do indeed feel poor, but actually we are rich and have so much because we have one on whom we can call. We often look at our lives, compare them with others and become only too aware of what we are lacking. Instead we would do well to begin by looking at the wonder of God and fixing our eyes on all the majesty and power that belongs to him – and then bring our needs to him with confidence.