WISDOM FOR LIVING DAILY DEVOTIONAL
SEPTEMBER 1, 2022
TOPIC: IS YOUR HEART OVERWHELMED?
BY T. O. BANSO
“From the end of the earth I will cry to You when my heart is overwhelmed; Lead me to the rock that is higher than I” (Psalm 61:2 New King James Version).
As human beings, there are times when we are overwhelmed by life’s troubles. At such a time, many people do everything, except the right things. But David said in Psalm 61:2 that he would cry to God – seek the face of God – whenever he was overwhelmed. “From the end of the earth I will cry to You when my heart is overwhelmed; lead me to the rock that is higher than I” (Psalm 61:2 New King James Version).
What does it mean for your heart to be overwhelmed? The New International Version puts the verse this way: “From the ends of the earth I call to you, I call as my heart grows faint; lead me to the rock that is higher than I.” So we can say a heart that is overwhelmed is a heart that is fainting.
The Contemporary English Version describes it as feeling hopeless: “I feel hopeless, and I cry out to you from a faraway land. Lead me to the mighty rock.” The Good News Translation says, “In despair and far from home I call to you! Take me to a safe refuge.” An overwhelmed heart is a heart that is in despair. Another translation says, “From the ends of the earth, I call to you when I begin to lose heart” (God’s Word Translation). When one begins to lose heart, it means one’s heart is overwhelmed.
Also, when one’s heart is overwhelmed, one could become afraid. The New Century Version says, “I call to you from the ends of the earth when I am afraid. Carry me away to a high mountain.” The phrase “heart is overwhelmed” literally means “covered over with darkness” or “distress” (Jamieson-Fausset-Brown Commentary). The second part of Psalm 61:2 says, “Lead me to the rock that is higher than I” (New King James Version). Jesus Christ is this higher rock. He is our refuge.
What should you do when your heart is overwhelmed, your heart grows faint, you’re in despair, you begin to lose heart, or you’re afraid? Do what David did? He cried to God or called to God. You, too, should cry to God. Call to Him.
In the midst of all his troubles, David said, “One thing I have desired of the LORD, that will I seek: that I may dwell in the house of the LORD All the days of my life, to behold the beauty of the LORD, and to inquire in His temple” (Psalm 27:4 New King James Version). He said in verse 8, “When You said, ‘Seek My face,’ My heart said to You, ‘Your face, LORD, I will seek’” (New King James Version).
What does it mean to seek His face? The Amplified Bible explains thus: “You have said, Seek My face [inquire for and require My presence as your vital need]. My heart says to You, Your face (Your presence), Lord, will I seek, inquire for, and require [of necessity and on the authority of Your Word]” (Psalm 27:8). In other words, His face is the same as His presence.
To seek His face is to inquire for and require His presence as your vital need. Take note of the phrase as your vital need. This describes how you should inquire for and require the presence of God. The Living Bible puts Psalm 27:8 this way: “My heart has heard you say, ‘Come and talk with me, O my people.’ And my heart responds, ‘Lord, I am coming.’” Go to the presence of God and talk with Him. Many people talk about their troubles with everyone they know except God.
We need more of the presence of God when we’re overwhelmed with problems. We need more of God when we have more of life’s troubles! Our problems should drive us closer to Him rather than the other way round. In God’s presence, we receive strength, correct perspective, increased faith to endure, and greater vitality for our dwindling energy. Psalm 16:11 says, “You will show me the path of life; In Your presence is fullness of joy; at Your right hand are pleasures forevermore” (New King James Version).
God is looking for those who will seek Him as of vital necessity. David said, “The Lord looked down from heaven upon the children of men to see if there were any who understood, dealt wisely, and sought after God, inquiring for and of Him and requiring Him [of vital necessity]” (Psalm 14:2 Amplified Bible). Did you take note of the phrase “vital necessity”?
Psalm 53, another psalm of David, says a similar thing in verse 2: “God looked down from heaven upon the children of men to see if there were any who understood, who sought (inquired after and desperately required) God” (Amplified Bible).
Seeking the face of God or inquiring after and seriously requiring God is most helpful, especially when you are overwhelmed. That was what David did. When you are harassed by the problems of life, when your heart is fainting, or when you’re in despair, make God your first priority.
Rather than allow Satan to be preaching deadly sermons to you and manipulating you with negative imaginations, humble yourself and seek the face of God, knowing that He has the needed solutions to problems that overwhelm you. David said, “The humble shall see it and be glad; you who seek God, inquiring for and requiring Him [as your first need], let your hearts revive and live” (Psalm 69:32 Amplified Bible). Let God be your first need, your last resort. Don’t wait until other things or other people have failed you before you come to Him.
Praying to God to rescue him from his adversaries, David said in Psalm 70:4, “May all those who seek, inquire of and for You, and require You [as their vital need] rejoice and be glad in You; and may those who love Your salvation say continually, Let God be magnified!” (Amplified Bible). Did you see another important phrase there? – As their vital need. We saw earlier a similar phrase: as your vital need.
Some of the scriptures I cited here described how you should seek the face of God. When you are overwhelmed, you should desire the presence of God as of vital necessity, as your first need, and as your vital need. They are all expressing the same idea. Draw closer to God. Seek Him early.
If you are not born again, you need to give your life to Jesus now. I urge you to take the following steps: *Admit that you are a sinner and you cannot save yourself and repent of your sins. *Confess Jesus as your Lord and Saviour. *Renounce your past way of life – your relationship with the devil and his works. *Invite Jesus into your life. *As a mark of seriousness to mature in the faith, start attending a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church. There they will teach you how to grow in the Kingdom of God.
Kindly say this prayer now: O Lord God, I come unto You today. I know I am a sinner and I cannot save myself. I believe that Jesus is the Son of God who died on the cross to save me and God raised Him on the third day. I repent of my sins and confess Jesus as my Lord and Saviour. I surrender my life to Jesus now and invite Him into my heart. By this prayer, I know I am saved. Thank You, Jesus, for saving me and making me a child of God.
I believe you have said this prayer from your heart. Congratulations! You will need to join a Bible-believing and Bible-teaching church in your area where they will teach you how to live your new life in Christ Jesus. I pray that you flourish like a palm tree and grow like a cedar of Lebanon. May you grow into Christ in all things and become all God wants you to be. I will be glad to hear from you. The Lord be with you.
PRAYER POINTS: I shall make God my first need and not my last resort in Jesus’ name. Father, I will inquire for and require Your presence as my vital need. I pray for those whose hearts are overwhelmed and feel hopeless that they will seek Your presence today and receive help from You.
(For over 800 in-depth and powerful messages by T. O. Banso, visit www.cedarministry.org).
T. O. Banso is the President of Cedar Ministry International, Abuja, Nigeria.
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