How Long Will God Forget Me?
WHEN putting up with great hardships and difficulties, did you ever feel that God had forgotten all about you? Did you wonder whether he might be displeased with you and, hence, was giving you no help in solving pressing problems?
This is the way David came to feel, perhaps when experiencing persecution from King Saul or, later, during the time of his son Absalom’s revolt. Regardless of the period involved, David had trials for such a long time that he found himself in a very low state, wondering whether Jehovah had forgotten him. He was prompted to exclaim: “How long, O Jehovah, will you forget me? Forever? How long will you conceal your face from me?” (Ps. 13:1) It seemed to David as if Jehovah had concealed his face in displeasure, not intervening in his behalf. So he further asks: “How long shall I set resistance in my soul, grief in my heart by day?” This may mean that he wondered how long he would be left to work out his own means of resistance to the distressing circumstances in which he found himself and how long his grief would last day in and day out.
Next, the psalmist raises the question: “How long will my enemy be exalted over me?” Seemingly forsaken by Jehovah, he thus wonders how long his enemies would have the upper hand. He follows up this question with the plea: “Do look upon me; answer me, O Jehovah my God. Do make my eyes shine, that I may not fall asleep in death, that my enemy may not say: ‘I have won out over him!’ that my adversaries themselves may not be joyful because I am made to stagger.” (Ps. 13:2-4) Yes, David earnestly wanted the Most High to answer his supplication, coming to his aid and lifting his spirits so that his eyes might “shine” or “beam.” He desired to remain alive so that his enemies would not conclude that they had actually triumphed and rejoice that he had tottered and experienced a fall from which he would not recover.
Even though David felt as if he had been abandoned by Jehovah, his faith remained strong. This is evident from his concluding words: “As for me, in your loving-kindness I have trusted; let my heart be joyful in your salvation. I will sing to Jehovah, for he has dealt rewardingly with me.” (Ps. 13:5, 6) Despite the difficulties he was facing, David trusted in Jehovah’s loving-kindness or active compassionate concern and, with hope and joy, looked forward to deliverance from his trials. He recalled how Jehovah had dealt rewardingly with him in the past and determined to continue singing songs of praise.
Like David, we should never forget the grand things that Jehovah God has done for us. In expression of his surpassing love, he gave his only-begotten Son. (John 3:16) Since our coming to know the Most High, we have personally experienced his loving care and help in answer to our prayers. From what we know about our Creator’s dealing with his servants as a whole and individually, we can be confident that he will strengthen us in our hour of need. When experiencing a particular trialsome period, we can take comfort in the inspired words: “Throw all your anxiety upon him, because he cares for you.”—1 Pet. 5:7.