Lately, I find myself returning again and again to Psalm 40. Listen to the first three verses:

 I waited patiently for the Lord;
he turned to me and heard my cry.
 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.
 He put a new song in my mouth,
a hymn of praise to our God.
Many will see and fear the Lord
and put their trust in him.

 This is such a challenge for me. Why is waiting patiently so hard sometimes? Thankfully, God hears us when we cry out to him. He lifts us out of our muck and mire. Once we are out, we can sing a new song praising the good things he has done.

I started this year with a long list of things that I needed from God. I cried out! I waited. Sometimes I waited patiently. More often, I kicked and cried and groaned like a toddler. God has been checking things off my long list. A situation resolved here, a problem taken care of there. I still have a list of things I’m crying out for, but my list is shorter.

Now my challenge is remembering to change my song. I want to rejoice and praise God for all the good things he’s given me, for each problem that he’s resolved. Instead, I’m tempted to keep crying and pointing at the problems on my list that still have no visible solution.

Lord, help me to praise you. Help me to recognize your incredible work in my life. Thank you for pulling me out of my own muck and mire. You are truly life-giving. Thank you, Jesus. Amen

How do you respond when God rescues you from some, but not all of your problems?


Ellen BenefieldEllen spent most of a decade as a missionary in a low-income neighborhood in Mazatlan, Mexico, Now she’s starting a new adventure in Central Illinois. God’s love and grace has guided her through all of life’s crazy ups and downs. She hopes to follow where the Holy Spirit leads and encourage others to do the same. She lives with her husband and three sons in Peoria, Illinois.