‘Some went out on the sea in ships;’ Psalm 107.23
To this category of people in need there is no blame whatsoever apportioned for the difficulty facing them. These are people going about their work, living their normal lives. They are even described in verse 24 as having an eye open to the wonders of God - ‘They saw the works of the LORD’ - and yet they encountered horrific storms.
All too often when things go wrong we are quick to apportion blame, either to ourselves or to others. We want to find out the reason why, when maybe there is no reason that makes any sense to us. It is all too easy to wonder about the cause of other people’s problems rather than drawing alongside them to help.
Whatever the cause of your own or others people’s difficulties, the advice given in verse 28 is simple –cry out to the Lord in your trouble and he will bring you out of your distress. It sounds quite simplistic, and yet it is so often the last thing to which we turn. We will indeed analyse, fret, ask whether it is what God wants and ponder our worthiness, yet the point of this psalm is undeniable – when trouble hits, whether or not it is of your own doing, turn to God and call to him for help.
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The Revd John Ryeland, Director of The Christian Healing Mission