January 20, 2023

God Hears Your Cries and Prayers

The LORD is good, a refuge in times of trouble. He cares for those who trust in him. Nahum 1:7

There are times when I wish everybody would get it together and do the same thing everywhere–like pass an international law that all the water faucets in all the world would be standardized–hot water on the left, cold on the right. Red for hot and blue for cold, and that all of them would turn on and off the same way. Do any color combination the United Nations wants! Just do the same thing everywhere.

This would indeed make the world a safer place and take the hazard out of getting scalded when, not too bright from jet lag, you head for the shower, thinking the faucets work the same way as they do at home, and either getting scalded or flash frozen.

Emergency numbers are in the same category. In some places of the world, dialing 9-1-1 brings the police or fire department, but dialing the same combination elsewhere is apt to make you think you connected with a Star Wars communication center or you get a voice on the line that sounds like you’re talking to outer space.

There are some things, however, which are universal–Thank God! –that bring the same response wherever you are. Try smiling at a baby and watch the expression on the mother’s face. When you smile at her baby, she smiles too. There’s an invisible communication link between a baby and her mother, and when you acknowledge the baby with a smile, whether you smile to a Russian, Chinese, or Filipino, the mother understands the language of love and you connect.

Actually, it’s the same way with God. I was talking one time to a friend whose wife had been in the hospital for 58 days. They were then in their 80’s with no children to take care of them. He said, “After three-score-and-ten, you are on your own.”   The “three-score-and-ten” is a reference to Psalm 90, where Moses said that the days of our years are about 70 and then soon we are gone. And, altogether too often, he is right; yet the 9-1-1 line is always open to heaven.

Do you ever stop to thank God that the line to heaven is never busy and that God is never too tired, too disinterested, or too busy to hear your cry? Proverbs 18:10 says, “The name of the LORD is a strong tower; the righteous run to it and are safe.”   David, who used that 911 number frequently, wrote, “For in the day of trouble he will keep me safe in his dwelling; he will hide me in the shelter of his tabernacle and set me high upon a rock” (Psalm 27:5). In a time of world distress, Nahum wrote, ” The LORD is good, a refuge in times of trouble. He cares for those who trust in him” (Nahum 1:7),

A final thought. The numbers 9-1-1 are supposed to be for real emergencies–the house is on fire, a burglar is breaking in, your child has just rolled off the changing table or something equally distressing, and God is there in times of trouble. But try dialing 9-1-1 when you can’t get the garden hose to work, or you just feel down and blue. You’ll discover quickly that the 9-1-1 operator doesn’t want to hear about it.

But God cares about your heart cries, your “not so good days” and the times when you need to tell someone how you feel. He knows, He hears, and He cares. God is not just a 911 source of comfort and help, to get you out of trouble. He’s there for the whole trip, and He’s there no matter how the faucets turn on, or how the air conditioner works.

Thank God, wherever you are, He’s as close as your heart cry and prayer.

Resource reading: Revelation 21.