My soul faints with longing for your salvation,
But I have put my hope in your word.
That internal longing? That yearning after fulfillment of God’s promises? That’s the soul’s cry for a rescue that is of God. While it remains I have a healthy appetite, but my hope runs deeper than emotion. It is a fact – a completed act and vow that I can observe within myself.
My eyes fail, looking for your promise.
I say, “When will you comfort me?”
My body follows the pattern of my spirit and my mind, properly confessing that he will, that he has promised to save, but asking when. We are allowed to ask “When?” – but asked to trust he will.
Though I am like a wineskin in the smoke
I do not forget your decrees.
Losing weight, tanned, dirty, smelly, stinging eyes – all this is secondary. Though I am in pain and though my body tends cries for attention, I do not forget, for my knowledge of God’s laws is not simply the interest of my mind. My spiritual memory is formed of my past actions, which prove that I have not forgotten God’s way, because even now I long for him.
How long must your servant wait?
When will you punish my persecutors?
Asking these questions directly means that the only real answer comes with God’s action.
The arrogant dig pitfalls for me –
Contrary to your law.
Ridiculous, isn’t it Lord? What do they imagine they will achieve? Let me draw your attention to it, Father. Here are traps – illegal traps! For me! When I am following your decrees the path is firm and dry – but traps are everywhere.
All your commands are trustworthy,
Help me, for men persecute me without cause.
My persecutors do not know, follow or understand your commands. Help me by helping me to follow these trustworthy commands that will characterise my life so differently – by trusting, not imagining my own way, by doing, not worrying – and so within my own mind to remove those causeless, weak persecutors which I now know to be impermanent and senseless. My own self-indulgent habits and ways of thought that have become traps for me as I walk your path – help me to disregard such unholiness.
They almost wiped me from the earth
But I have not forsaken your precepts.
Even King David risked being forgotten, it seems. But what is more permanent than wealth and Kingdoms? God’s law – and all those things that follow the pattern of God’s instruction share its security.
Preserve my life according to your love
and I will obey the statutes of your mouth.
These aren’t just any statutes! God’s spoken care for us is as eternal as his ancient rules – but we have a new promise of these rules, no longer rules to us but a conversation. And this is his preservation – to be with us and in us by his Word.