“He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; he set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand.” (Ps 40:2 NIV)
Seeing the injustice, unrest, and chaos of this society, we may have feelings of uncertainty, fear, anxiety, anger, helplessness, or even hopelessness. Is getting trampled on by ruthless scoundrels justifiable? Violence is not the answer – we need to come together, lift each other up, and ensure justice will be served. Most of us are going through the same storm, albeit in different boats. The storm may be uncertain, but we certainly are in our own boats and trying to learn how to navigate through this storm. When I am in despair, I look to King David and his words of wisdom in the book of Psalms.
David had many occasions to reflect on the problem of personal injustice. Psalm 37 is a response to the problem of evil, which the Old Testament often expresses as a question: why do the wicked prosper and the good suffer? The Psalm answers that the situation is only temporary. God will reward the good and punish the wicked. In Psalms 37 – 39, we find that David had much sorrow. However, in Psalm 40, God had answered his prayers. David was raised up from despair to hope, was brought out of deep troubles, and made to sing a new song of God’s love and power.
“Blessed is that man who makes the LORD his trust, and does not respect the proud, nor such as turn aside to lies… I delight to do Your will, O my God, and Your law is within my heart.” (Ps 40:4, 8)
When the evil prosper and the good suffer, we can be tempted to doubt God and His justice. If we are not careful to cultivate the right perspective on the situation, we can be tempted to join the evildoers. Rather, we should submit to God, putting off irritation and anger, and trusting the Lord to judge righteously. Let us leave things in God’s hands and do what God has given us to do in obedience to His commandments. Do not let other people’s sin lead us into sin.