David is struggling to hold his volcanic distress inside, since he doesn’t want the wicked to see him suffer or complain, but at last he is overcome. The fruit of his self-control, however, is that when the words overflow, they are not angry and bitter words against God, but a prayerful plea for mercy. David’s sins have been forgiven, but the consequences are still exhausting him, and so he pleads for God to turn His burning eyes away. This disturbing psalm breaks open our constricted categories of prayer. When God’s chastisement is consuming your life, you don’t need to passively sit by and take it. God will not hold His peace at your tears! He is compassionate, and full of mercy, and David shows us how to boldly ask for it.
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