You’re at the end of your rope. In desperation you do what so many have done in the past and cry, “Lord, help!” Maybe you meant it, maybe you didn’t. Maybe you’re using it to test God; as proof He really exists and that He’s willing to help. If so, you’re in good company.
The Apostle Peter, even as he stepped out in faith, began focusing on the winds and waves of his current circumstances and cried out, “Lord, save me!” (Matt. 14:30). When he took his eyes off of the Lord everything began to go wrong. He was sure he was sinking, destined to drown. Thankfully God is merciful in our humanity and stretches out his hand to save us from situations of our own making.
Christ then asks Peter outright, “Why did you doubt me?” For myself, I’m grateful that the Lord rescues me first and then asks questions. That is so wonderful about our God. He saves me out of circumstances and then brings correction. Is it possible that we don’t ask for help more because we are afraid that God will ask the hard questions first and if we don’t get the answer right, we won’t get help? Is it possible that difficult life issues dull our ability to see the very character and nature of the One whom we came to trust in the first place?
King David found himself in a similar position and had to verbally reaffirm his belief in God’s kindness toward him. I love the prayer he prayed in Psalm 86 (NIV). I can hear his desperation and yet his conviction that God’s love, mercy, and forgiveness would compel the Lord to intervene in his situation, even if only as proof of the goodness of God. It is my prayer that as you read it, you will call out to the Lord and that He in His lovingkindness will answer you. All it takes is, “Lord, help!”
Hear me, Lord, and answer me,
for I am poor and needy.
Guard my life, for I am faithful to you;
save your servant who trusts in you.
You are my God;
have mercy on me, Lord,
for I call to you all day long.
Bring joy to your servant, Lord,
for I put my trust in you.
You, Lord, are forgiving and good,
abounding in love to all who call to you.
Hear my prayer, Lord;
listen to my cry for mercy.
When I am in distress, I call to you,
because you answer me.
Among the gods there is none like you, Lord;
no deeds can compare with yours.
All the nations you have made
will come and worship before you, Lord;
they will bring glory to your name.
For you are great and do marvelous deeds;
you alone are God.
Teach me your way, Lord,
that I may rely on your faithfulness;
give me an undivided heart,
that I may fear your name.
I will praise you, Lord my God, with all my heart;
I will glorify your name forever.
For great is your love toward me;
you have delivered me from the depths,
from the realm of the dead.
Arrogant foes are attacking me, O God;
ruthless people are trying to kill me—
they have no regard for you.
But you, Lord, are a compassionate and gracious God,
slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness.
Turn to me and have mercy on me;
show your strength in behalf of your servant;
save me, because I serve you
just as my mother did.
Give me a sign of your goodness,
that my enemies may see it and be put to shame,
for you, Lord, have helped me and comforted me.