In Psalm 73, we have the story of a man who was perplexed and discouraged by unjust things he saw going on around him. Wicked men were oppressing the weak and boasting about it. They committed violent acts, opposed God, and made life miserable for righteous people. Yet they lived prosperously, their crimes went unchecked, and it seemed to the psalm writer as if God was oblivious to what was going on.
We live in such a world today. Injustice abounds, heinous crimes against humanity are committed, perversion runs rampant and is called normal, racism and anti-Semitism are on the rise. Evil is celebrated, and goodness is declared to be evil. And God’s people are persecuted for standing for Jesus and biblical truth.
In the midst of it all, it is easy to become frustrated, discouraged, fearful, or bitter. As a result, many who call themselves Christians are lashing out in response to what they see happening around them. They release angry, hate-filled words, not realizing that they have lowered themselves to the same level as those with whom they are so frustrated.
Asaph, the writer of Psalm 73, discovered a better way. “I went into the sanctuary of God; then I understood their end.” In other words, when he took the time to be with the Lord, to listen to Him and inquire of Him, he gained God’s vantage point. He remembered that the Lord is just, and that He will not always allow the wicked to get away with evil.
We can do likewise. When tumultuous events go on around us, we can enter into the secret place of God’s Presence and ask Him to show us what is happening beneath the surface.
“Lord, where are You in all this?” “Why did You allow this?” “How do You see this event?” “I see only senseless tragedy here, but what do You see?” “God, it looks like we have lost the battle. Is there some way You are going to bring good out of this?”
As we inquire of Him, He will give us His perspective, so that we can pray rightly. God’s viewpoint, when revealed, is often quite surprising. His big-picture purposes in how events play out are beyond what we could ever figure out on our own. He will always take whatever the devil means for harm to bring about righteous justice. Romans 8:28 alludes to this principle: “And we know that all things work together for good to those who love God, to those who are the called according to His purpose.”
Furthermore, the devil and people he controls are mere pawns on God’s chessboard to bring His ultimate checkmate. The Lord sometimes uses evil events to bring hidden wounds to the surface so that they can be healed. He can then set things right in a greater way than if everything had simply sailed along smoothly.
When the Lord opens our understanding to see into His purposes, fear departs, hope arises in our hearts, and we gain fresh courage to partner with Him in higher-level intercession.
I encourage you to take your perplexities before the Lord. Ask Him to open your eyes to see as He sees. He will show you His plan and His prayer strategies. You will become a fearless overcomer, who cannot be shaken by what is going on in the natural world around you.