In my anguish I cried to the LORD, and he answered by setting me free. The LORD is with me; I will not be afraid.
When You Feel Stuck
Devotion based on Psalm 118:5–6
See series: Devotions
Several years ago, there was a popular book and movie about Aron Ralston, a climber who got trapped in Utah’s Bluejohn Canyon after an accident in which a large dislodged boulder pinned his arm against the narrow canyon wall. Ralston had not told anyone about his hiking plans, nor did he have anyway to call for help. There is an unforgettable scene in the movie where he realizes that his arm is stuck and he is not going to be able to free himself. He cries out for help, but his cry simply echoes through the vast canyon walls. There is no one to hear him. No one to help. Finally, after five days of surviving on a meager amount of food and water, Ralston broke his ulna and radius bones and amputated his trapped arm to escape.
While it might not be a life or death situation, there are times in our lives when we feel stuck. Whether it be in a relationship, a job, or even our own struggle with sin and guilt. Even when we cry out to God for help, sometimes it seems like the cry of that trapped climber reverberating off the empty canyon walls. Who is going to help me? Who is going to save me from death?
In the midst of betrayal and abandonment, with the weight of the world’s sins on his back and the impending punishment for their guilt looming on the horizon, Jesus called out to his heavenly Father. In faith he cried out to God and that cry did not simply echo into the void. God answered his prayer. Yes, Jesus had to suffer the pain and the shame of the cross for our benefit. But God did not abandon him. On the third day he raised him victoriously from the dead.
Because of Jesus we can be sure that God will answer our deepest cry for help as well. Through faith in Jesus as our Savior, we are intimately joined with him. His Father is our Father, and just as God ultimately answered his Son’s prayers for deliverance, he will answer ours too. Sometimes he miraculously delivers us from our current problems and trials. Sometimes he doesn’t. But in any case, we can be confident that God is working all things to bring us ultimate deliverance.
So next time you feel stuck, next time you are hard pressed and in anguish, cry out to your heavenly Father. Cry out trusting that the Lord hears and answers your prayers. Know that because of Jesus, you can say, “The Lord is with me; I will not be afraid.”
Dear Heavenly Father, when I feel like I am stuck and in anguish I feel life’s difficulties and problems pressing down, help me to trust in you and your unfailing deliverance. Through Jesus my Savior. Amen.
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