“If you have nothing nice to say, then don’t say it at all.” Could this common phrase come from what David is talking about in Psalm 39? Possibly, but let’s take a good look at what is troubling him. In the beginning of the Psalm, it might seem that once again David is complaining about his persecutors and enemies. While he mentions his plight, this isn’t the focus of his problem. He is struggling with not cursing God! David was frustrated with God because of the frailty of his own life and the suffering he had been enduring.
David, however, was a man of God, “a man after God’s own heart,” the bible tells us. David knew how sinful it would be to blaspheme God. We also recognize that God already knew what was on David’s heart. So this whole psalm revolves around David being upset, angry, and frustrated but still trying to be righteous about it. Have you ever given thought to how you respond when you are feeling these emotions? Those days when you just can’t take it anymore and it seems everyone is against you and then just one more comes along…you want to snap! Maybe you even cry out to God and ask Him why He would be so cruel to you to allow these things to happen. Maybe you blame Him for the things happening to you: you spilled your coffee on yourself as you are leaving the house for work, your kid got into a fight and now you have to go sort things out at their school, your spouse isn’t giving you the attention or love you need today, EVERY person who is driving in front of you is determined to make you late to wherever it is you are rushing to…
David says to God, “Lord, remind me that I’m but a shadow floating around for a little bit. Remind me that none of this stuff TRULY matters in the grander scheme of life. Help me not to get so bent out of shape over the little things. Please help me with these struggles I am experiencing and help me!” This is purity amidst frustration. In Luke 6:45 Jesus says:
The good person out of the good treasure of the heart produces good, and the evil person out of evil treasure produces evil; for it is out of the abundance of the heart that the mouth speaks.
Even when evil starts to well up inside of us, there is a way to let it go. When this short life begins to overwhelm us and drive us mad, there is a hope and a peace we can grab hold of. When all we can think about doing is screaming and cursing, let’s hold our tongues and cry out silently to God. His favorite prayer from us is, “help!” He is there for us. He loves us. He cares for us and wants us to depend upon Him. Why does He allow these things to occur? So we learn more how to rely on Him amidst the chaos of our daily lives.