Psalm 119.28 My soul melts away for sorrow; strengthen me according to your word!
Again, David tells how he is. Life is difficult. He cries with sorrow. He uses strong expressions to put words into the situation he is in. "It's as if my soul is melting away in those running tears." In fact, he says that the sorrow was about to kill him. In one version he says he has drowned in tears of pain (SPCL). He carries in his heart a painful grief that is heavy to bear. Grief overwhelms him. Sorrow eats him up. He is suffocated by the painful grief.
It is ok that he does not tell us the cause of this heavy grief, but grief is often linked to something we have lost. This makes it easier for us to identify with what he says, because we have all experienced grief in one way or another. We live in a corruptible world. Everything is decaying. Losing something that is dear to us is a part of life. The grief befalls us all, both pious Christians and godless atheists.
For me, it was a painful grief when Levi, our oldest son, died at a young age, just 24 years old. It hurt far into the soul. When he died, all the dreams I had for him were brutally crushed. It is unnatural for parents to have to bury their own children. For three months I was dissolved into tears. Grief overwhelmed me. Until God dried my tears through a prophetic word from a faithful servant of the Lord.
Losing friends can be just as painful as losing a child. When those you thought were good friends, suddenly turn away from you, or even worse betray you. Then you can stand in a friendless and in deep sorrow. Grief over lost friendship has caused many tears to flow. It is not always sorrow comes in dramatic ways, but it is always painful. The grief can come in many forms, but is usually deeply personal and painful, as David describes it.
When sad things happens to us, for one reason or another, it is good to pray as David prays: “Strengthen me. Raise me up! " The grief is always heavy and pushes us down. When we pray to God, we are always lifted up. God helps us to let go of what we have experienced and to look forward to a secure future. God can even turn the hurt we experience for the good of us. It can be difficult to see or understand when grief weighs and tears flow. Either way, it's good to pray: Strengthen me!
Notice that David does not only pray for the Lord to strengthen him. He asks to be raise up, as God has said, according to his promise. What a blessing it is to know what God has said. For a joy in the midst of grief to know God's comforting word of hope about the future. Having received a word from the Lord, and being able to ask that He do with us according to His word, is the best remedy for grief that I know of. Imagine how great it is, that we can pray in accordance with God's word.
Strengthen me, as you said! This is how we can pray when we have hidden God's Word in our hearts and know what He has said. Then we can have the grace to look ahead in faith and wait for something better and bigger. When we accept the words of the Invisible, the losses in this visible world becomes easier to bear, and grief not so heavy anymore. For God always restores us to something better!