Psalms for Prayer: Day 8

A Prayer in Times of Sorrow


Today's Text: Psalm 86:1-17

Scripture Reading: Psalm 86:1-17

There was a season of my life when it seemed like weeping willows were suddenly sprouting on every corner. At the time, I had just taken up a new habit of running and can remember having to duck my head and step carefully on the trails so as to not tangle my feet on their branches. An artist like DaVinci or Monet probably would have been inspired by their presence. Unfortunately, I’m not the kind of girl who thinks poetically about things like pollen. I’m more prone to believe the trees are just standing in my way.

That’s exactly how I feel about sorrow—it had better stay in its own lane. I wish my experience with sorrow was only as extensive as a good cry at the end of a sad movie. But the truth is my shoulders have been crushed by the weight of grief, leaving me to feel like a weeping willow: arms fallen, exasperated, feeble. I’ve tried not to give myself over to the weight of my sadness for fear I won’t be able to stand back up again.

It’s easy to see why we call them “weeping” willow trees. They were first given their name because of the way rain falls from their branches resembling tear drops. However, they grow best near water, able to absorb large quantities of water during floods. In fact, when strategically planted beside ponds, they can even help to prevent ground erosion. And in a way, our sorrow is like that too. Avoiding it may appear to be the best survival tactic, but taking it in and then bringing it honestly before God is one way He strengthens and grows us.

Protect my life, for I am faithful (Psalm 86:2).

I used to think weeping willows looked like crippling sorrow, the kind you never fully recover from. They seemed to be consistently sad, their branches swaying on the ground in the wind. Yet, now I wonder if the posture of a weeping willow tree isn’t so much a picture of what sorrow does to us, as it is an image of what we’re to do with our sorrow. Heads bowed in submission to the Lord, we can expose the depth of our sadness to Him without hesitation.

All the nations you have made will come and bow down before you, Lord, and will honor your name (v. 9).

Despite their appearance, weeping willows are one of the fastest growing trees around, gaining 8 to 10 feet per year. This rapid growth may be one of the reasons they have a relatively short life span. But to me, somehow this signifies the promised end of our sorrow. While the layers of sadness that fill us here on earth are many, joy is our eternal posture.

Lord, give strength to your servant (v. 16).

Sorrow stretches us in ways we probably wouldn’t ever choose for ourselves, but it strengthens us all the same. Deep sorrow makes way for great joy. By His grace, may we embrace the sorrow that seems to stand in our way, allowing it to remind us of God’s kindness, of how He strengthens, comforts, protects, and renews us. In this way, our hope and joy are not far off and distant, but present with us each and every day, just as He is. Amen.

Bring joy to your servant’s life, because I appeal to you, Lord (v. 4).


  • Sherry French

    Thank you so much for this.

  • Madelyn Riddle

    11Teach me your way, O Lord,
    that I may walk in your truth;
    unite my heart to fear your name.
    12I give thanks to you, O Lord my God, with my whole heart,
    and I will glorify your name forever.
    13For great is your steadfast love toward me;
    you have delivered my soul from the depths of Sheol.

  • Sharon Willeford

    Beautiful words and I needed this today. My niece at 40 will be buried tomorrow, leaving a husband 2 teenage girls and a son . Your words will really help today & tomorrow, & future.

  • Jami Nelson

    I have been living in a perpetual state of sorrow for several years. I didn’t realize until reading today’s study that sorrow over took me and I never stood back up. Now I understand exactly how to pray. Asking the Lord to restore my joy.

    • Lindsey Tanner

      I feel the exact same way. Just now realizing how deep the sorrow in my life has been and how long I’ve been living in it!

  • Anna Fabrizio

    I had such a hard day yesterday I just cried and cried to the Lord for help. Here I am a day later reading this and I can’t even be surprised how on-par this reading is because He is so faithful!

    • Taylor Barnett

      Love when God does this for me too! Just a reminder that’s he’s still there and that he’s got everything under control!

  • I have been in a season of sorrow. What was once a great promise of financial security in a job turned into feelings of rejection and now financial insecurity. Praying that I can wait on the Lord during this time and trust in His plan for my life.

    • Tiffany Taylor

      Praying for you Carrie to trust above all else and to stand on the Truth that God is For you and He is working on your behalf. His desire is not to just give you plans but THE plans for your life. Psalm 37:25 says “ Once I was young and now I am old. Yet I have never seen the godly abandoned or their children begging for bread.” May you find peace in this assured promise of provision in your life.

  • Sarah Grace

    Wow this is so relevant to my day. God knew what I needed to hear.

  • I am in a situation that is headed to a sorrowful ending in the next couple of months. It feels like a black hole I will not be able to avoid. I know that God will be with me through it and that I will come out the other side but right now it is very strange to know it’s there and yet still have mainly moments of peace and even joy and happiness. I do not know for certain when the heart-wrenching sorrow will hit but it is likely to be here any time from late July through September. I see things around my house that are here because of this awful thing coming and I catch myself wishing these complications would go away and my life and house could be normal again but then I realize when that moment arises I will be absolutely devastated. So as much as I hate the complications they are what is keeping life going right now so I need to embrace them as I also remember it will be okay even when I am in the midst of the black hole it will be okay and it will get better. I also need to remind myself that it is okay to wish things would be normal again without feeling guilt because I am not wishing for the end to come, I am really just wishing that the reality could be different. Through it all I feel His presence and thus I have peace in the middle of this mess. Thank you for your written words here, they really helped me today. I believe I was late getting to this Bible study because He knew I’d need these words to comfort me during this time.

    • Stephen

      For me, the black hole opened up with no warning, but the result is the same. It’s going to be very hard at first, once the numbness wears off, but you are correct that it will get better. Lord, have mercy.

    • Alyssa Anthony

      Sending love and prayers to you.

  • Donna Hethcock

    So wonderful to read your post, Tina. I recognize you from several studies❤️ and feel you are a friend! I too ❤️the new song, SO WILL I. I encourage all to check out the lyrics and sing along at the top of your voice!!!

  • Bethany Juhl

    Wow I needed this today. I’m 22 weeks pregnant and found out last week that our baby has brain abnormalities and is not expected to live very long after birth. I’ve already started to grieve and haven’t allowed myself to feel deep sorrow yet. I know the hardest part is yet to come but I know I’m not alone in this journey. The last paragraph is so powerful.

    • She Reads Truth

      Thanks for sharing Bethany. We’re so sorry to hear this. We’re praying for you and your family today and are so grateful that you’re here reading along with us. -Margot, The SRT Team

    • Emily Oien

      I’m so sorry to hear about your baby. What great sorrow. You will be in my prayers.

    • Susie Argil

      Bethany, thank you for sharing. I am praying for you today. I have a friend who went through a similar loss and she found great encouragement and support in a group called Hope Mommies. Their purpose is to help families who experience infant loss to find community, grief resources and the Hope of Christ. You are right when you wrote that you are not alone in the journey. I I am praying that you will experience the overwhelming, constant love of God today and in the days to come.

    • Alyssa Anthony

      Sending love to you.

  • Peony Noirr


  • Kari Shoultz

    Thank you

  • Amber Capece-Price

    Praying for joy in this broken world. Personally by broken friendships. My battle with multiple sclerosis. Having trouble finding joy in the day.

    • She Reads Truth

      We’re praying for you Amber and are so grateful that you’re reading along with us! -Margot, The SRT Team

    • Sarah S

      Amber- praying that joy would spring up inside of you. Broken friendships hurt deeply, but God’s timing is perfect. He pulls us through and makes us closer to him on the other side

  • Kari Shoultz

    I am experiencing great sorrow. I just received word that my Grandpa (more like dad) only has a few days left. Praying for rest and comfort during this time of sadness

    • She Reads Truth

      Hi Kari, thank you for sharing. We’re so sorry to hear this and will be praying for you during this time. So grateful for you. -Margot, The SRT Team

  • The Lord and His ways are marvelous. When this devotional came out (yesterday) I found out that one of my coworkers passed away in a car accident in another country over the weekend while returning home from doing mission work. I am a school counselor and she was an incredible, God-fearing, loving math teacher at my school. Of course, our school community is in deep sorrow and mourning. This is the second death, within months of each other, that my school has experienced this year. I thank God for His overcoming peace that comforts us and gives us strength to move forward each day. I hold on to His promises knowing that joy comes in the morning and that one day we will meet with her again. Please keep the family of this teacher, students, and coworkers in your prayers.

    • She Reads Truth

      Thank you for sharing Mel. We’re so sorry to hear this and will be praying over you and your community during this time. So grateful that you’re here reading along with us. -Margot, The SRT Team

  • Melody IreneConey

    Been in nursing school swamped with a crazy schedule, working night shifts on the weekend and barely making it to church or even getting to see my husband. I have felt this heaviness of sorrow and I need God to hear my in my cry to fill my heart with joy.
    Its been a hard season for me.


      Praying for you to find abd feel joy in this stressful season of life!

    • Mariam Kamel

      Praying for you! I’m in nursing school as well, and I understand how difficult it can get. I pray that God washes peace of you during this season of your life!

  • my sorrow at the moment comes from feeling alone, misunderstood, and hated. I am the top rung of the ladder at my place of employment. I try to always be fair, and when people have to be moved around, do my best to place them where their strengths are. These decisions are always done as a leadership team. so, why is it I am being slandered and gossiped about? I have to believe that God will fight for me….

    • Becky

      Lori, I find myself in the same situation and it is heartbreaking to know that you are hated and slandered when you are trying to make the best decision for the organization as well as individuals. I know I often look to others for affirmation instead of the Lord. I take pride in being the “good boss” but that I think God has allowed me a season where people don’t think that in order to show me it is His opinion that matters. I don’t have to prove to other people that I am kind and care for them. God knows the intentions of our hearts. Praying for you!

      • Lori

        Thank you for your prayer. I will also pray for you! I also find myself seeking approval from others. I need Gods approval only. this morning, I prayed, Lord, please stay with me today…. the still small voice told my heart, “Stay in my word, daughter”.

  • Bevvie Byrom

    Wow. Its like this was written for me today. Im battling depression really hard. And its bipolar depression. Which is different from other forms. I just want to be happy. Oh Lord teach me your ways that i might be able to imitate you o God. Amen.

  • Beth Starkey

    Yes!!! This is definitely a seasoning of sorrow for us, since losing our stillborn daughter. ❤️ BUT, exactly what she said! Sorrow gives way to great joy! Not that we’ll get our daughter back, but that through this time God will remind us of His strength and who HE is and who we are in HIM! And, so, I keep my eyes FIXED on Him… fixed on the unseen! (2 Cor. 4) Praise God!! This life is only temporary! Our sorrows are only temporary!!

    • Natalie

      Wow, Beth. My prayers are with you as you go through this incredibly hard time. May you keep this eternal perspective and may the Lord bring you immeasurable peace.

      • Beth Starkey

        Thank you, thank you Natalie!! Thank you for prayers for a sister you haven’t met in person yet – we’ll meet in heaven one day!

    • Ashlie

      Beth, Praying for you sister. Nearly 5 years ago, we held our son for two hours before he passed. All I could remember thinking/feeling is “I am holding my son, and my Heavenly Father is holding me…” because how else do you stand after going through that? Keep your eyes on Jesus, just as you are. So much love and prayer I am sending your way. (P.S. Five years later, I am a mom to two beautiful children from across an ocean. HE uses ALL things to work together for our good. AMEN!)

      • Beth Starkey

        I don’t know if my first response went through? But thank you thank for prayers! And thank you for sharing a glimpse of your story, too! Love how God works in our lives for His glory and brings everything together!! Thankful for praise Him with you!!

    • Sara

      Praying for you, Beth. I’m so sorry for your loss.

  • Rene' Bancroft

    I love knowing this fact now that, “when strategically planted by a pond…weeping willows can help prevent erosion.” Whoa!! At times, sortie has definitely felt like soul-erosion, but thinking back in those times of deep sadness & weeping in my life, I can now see that those moments in the hands of God, have indeed given me strength to not be overtaken or overwhelmed by life’s circumstances! Praise the Lord!!!

  • Amanda Montgomery

    Wow. What fantastic worship and acknowledgement of who the Lord is in the depths of David’s sorrow and desperation! I pray that I will remember David’s example in my future sorrow. I love Kaitlin’s words: “Yet, now I wonder if the posture of a weeping willow tree isn’t so much a picture of what sorrow does to us, as it is an image of what we’re to do with our sorrow. Heads bowed in submission to the Lord, we can expose the depth of our sadness to Him without hesitation.” Father, please nudge us into this posture in our hearts when we encounter sorrow!

  • Tanya Herrera Rodriguez

    Weeping willows = a reminder to constantly bow our heads looking to Him for strength and comfort and peace. ❤️ this so much

  • Amanda Montgomery

    Wow. What fantastic worship and acknowledgement of who the Lord is in the depths of David’s sorrow and desperation! I pray that I will remember David’s example in my future sorrow. I love Kaitlin’s words: “Yet, now I wonder if the posture of a weeping willow tree isn’t so much a picture of what sorrow does to us, as it is an image of what we’re to do with our sorrow. Heads bowed in submission to the Lord, we can expose the depth of our sadness to Him without hesitation.” Father, please nudge us into this posture in our hearts when we encounter sorrow!

  • I love this, mostly because to me it’s hits home that we can’t fool ourselves into thinking we are strong for “handling it ourselves” when really we are just shoving it down or away. Only by humbling ourselves before the Lord and admitting to ourselves we always need Him can we start to heal and work through the sorrow. So beautifully written Kaitlin thank you and God Bless!!

  • It is hard to overcome sorrow and regret. I’m still working on it each day.

    • Holly

      I’ve been reading Boundaries and working on owning my emotions and being responsible for how they can affect myself and other people. What has helped me to deal with the grief in my life is the song Weep with Me by Rend Collective.

    • Kaitlin

      Praying for you, sweet friend. You’re not alone. xo

  • Courtney-Erin

    Today’s devotional is something I am reading the day before the anniversary of my friends 21st year in heaven, May 1st 1997. I was crushed…my heart literally hurt for his family. And as a result of being a teenager when this occurred, I didn’t handle it properly. This was of course after a year of tragedy for my family, my grandmother had a massive stroke, another family friend passed away at a young age of thirty-six of breast cancer leaving three young children then to add to my pain, on March 31st 1998 my friend who passed away the year prior; his brother passed away at 19.
    So back to back I lost two friends. My senses at the age of 15 were immature.
    This carried into my adulthood (unfortunately) the moment people get too close Family, Friendships, Romantic relationships…I emotionally shut down, silently back up, discreetly tip-toe away from the inevitable hurt I will feel. A hardened exterior or wall comes in place, and my emotions close off.
    Because; I would prefer to not have to deal with my emotions…my sorrow, it consumed me. For ten years I carried the hurt of what happened, allowing it to cripple me. The pain of losing two young people and my grandmother was numbing. So I preferred to just keep myself numb, not with drugs or alcohol, but by being distant and cold when I would become close to people. So that when sorrow does come, I think; in my head I’ll be able to stop the hurt.
    This of course is a lie I have told myself for twenty-one years. But I didn’t want to be caught off guard. Now after all these years passed, I am just rounding the bend of God softening my heart. I am making an effort not to bolt on people because I’m afraid of the rug getting pulled out from under me. The was my avoiding tactic.
    Prayers that God continues to soften my heart and help it heal. Because this is definitely something I struggle with.

    • She Reads Truth

      Thanks so much for sharing that Courtney-Erin. We’re so grateful that you’re a part of our community and we’ll be praying for you! -Margot, The SRT Team

  • Thank you Kaitlin for writing this today. My family and I are going through a difficult time.. and this post came in perfect timing. After my grandpa passed away 8 months ago, my grandma is in the last stages of her life.. It’s so hard to type, she’s in hospice care and my heart is hurting. I know that God is good, and that this is the hardest part of life that we have to go through is loss. — this prayer is beautiful <3
    "Sorrow stretches us in ways we probably wouldn’t ever choose for ourselves, but it strengthens us all the same. Deep sorrow makes way for great joy. By His grace, may we embrace the sorrow that seems to stand in our way, allowing it to remind us of God’s kindness, of how He strengthens, comforts, protects, and renews us. In this way, our hope and joy are not far off and distant, but present with us each and every day, just as He is. Amen." Amen.

    • She Reads Truth

      Hi Jess, thanks for sharing. We’re so sorry to hear this and we will be praying for you and your family during this time. -Margot, The SRT Team

  • Kathleen Martello

    Beautiful, I love looking at trees with flowers on them and remember that the leaves and flowers weren’t there in the winter but they are there now and that same tree goes through that every year

  • Cynthia Johnston

    Remembering God is kind in all his deeds helps me in those times of sorrow. The night of sorrow may last long but, joy does come in the morning.

  • YvonneBonnie Delgado

    Wow, this has been my season of sorrow for all the old I never grieved completely and The new. But in this season God has grown faster than ever. Everyone I trusted in or placed my trust in are no longer there. But God…. He has taught me to rely on Him and only Him in everything. Thank you Lord for never leaving me nor forsaking me!

  • I will never look at willow trees the same way ever again! Thankful for this word. Thank you Lord because great sorrow makes a way for great joy. Thank you that there will soon be a day with no more tears, no more pain, no more sadness. I pray for all those battling anxiety and depression, Lord help them find their joy and strength from You and not from substances or mortal humans.

  • This morning I happily was singing along to this new song I have heard from Hillsong… So will I..
    I love love love it…
    It reminds me so of ALL God is in … everything.. to the point where ‘ if the oceans roar your greatness … oh so will I.
    So you can imagine the wrench at my heart when I stopped at the traffic lights and a young lady got out of the car in front and my heart leapt… I was looking at my daughter’s double…
    I was in bits … tears rolled down my face, I could hardly see, I had to pull over…the sadness in my heart too much to bear… then it came the held back tears, the uncontrollable sobbing… I had to pray. I had to.. I had to call on the Creator God, the giver of life and the protector of our hearts.. my heart was struggling and I needed the Father God to hold me and walk me through this unexpected experience…
    ‘.. and as you speak, a hundred billion creatures catch your breathe… every painted sky, a canvas of your Grace…,
    If mountains bow in reverence…my God so will I…
    Praying in that moment… helped me ..
    God came through and brought me back with the memories of what holding onto and calling out to Him does..
    I can see your heart in everything You’ve done.. every part designed in a work of art called love…
    Thank you Lord God for loving me enough to stand with me in that moment of sadness, heartache..
    ‘..If the stars were made to worship… Dear God, so will I…’
    Thank you Lord God.. thank you…

    Blessings my sisters… blessings.. xx

  • Verse 11 says “unite my heart to fear your name.” I so often feel divided in my heart – I want to follow Him but also stay in control. I want to have joy but not if I have to walk through sorrow first. My season of long lasting winter has taught me that God wants my whole heart and will pursue me until He gets it.

  • Kathy Allen

    I’m full of sorrow today. My 31 year old daughter is drifting away from her evangelical roots toward a belief system that embraces the culture at the cost of Biblical truth. She is leading other women in her small group in this endeavor. I’m praying that Jesus will lead her back to the Word of Truth and that He will lift me up from this sorrow.

  • What do you do when everything around you seems scary, dark, worrisome, sinful? I do struggle with depression and anxiety, and I’m sure this outlook is part of that. But I want to allow God’s truth to be louder than all that. Sometimes the world, peoples choices, things I can’t protect my kids from, and ways our society has changed just overwhelm me, and all I can see is the anxiety-producing. I do keep a gratitude list, and I pray daily. I take medication. But I’m so sad I’m not seeing the goodness in the world and only the bad.

    • Kara

      Hi Angela, I have struggled with the worlds brokenness too. It’s helped me to stay away from news stories, unfollow friends who post negative stories, etc. I try to keep my eyes on Him and look for the sometimes small miracles around me. I also pray “come Lord Jesus!” a lot. :) May He grant you some respite from the worlds sin today.

    • Lindsay

      In the same boat sister. Oftentimes I have an Ecclesiastes mindset but I know God calls me to look up and enjoy the little things. Being consistently in the word has really helped me recently. The word does not hide the fact that the world is going to be a mess. Reading about how the disciples find strength and faith in the Lord to overcome persecution gives me peace in the battles I face each day. I also find allowing yourself to praise and smile no matter your circumstances can be difficult but it really helps! Our spirit rejoices because Jesus has saved us and our hearts can feel far from that because of the broken world around us. Allow your Spirit to rejoice even when your heart is burdened. The Psalms are great too.

  • Susie Argil

    Todays devotional is beautifully written. I was blessed by the message of hope in the midst of sorrow. Thank you SRT team.

    • Nads

      I could not agree more…it moved me so deeply.

      Still, I want to direct God to the areas of life in which I “can” and cannot handle sorrow.

  • Davina Spencer

    Today’s devotion was heartfelt. My family recently experienced two back to back deaths of loved ones. It has been an encouraging time but I am especially thankful that joy will soon come.

    • Caralee Lilly

      …and that joy is promised.

    • Tina

      Davina. I am sorry for your loss. Sending love wrapped prayers for peace of heart and comfort from One who knows your heart and sadness…
      Yes. Tis truth.. no matter how dark the night Joy will come… hold get to Him..Amen..

  • Natasha Pavez

    I often wondered what 10+ years of depression was giving me, and how God would use it. I know He has made me stronger through it, but when I was in that abyss I couldn’t see any of it. One of the things He did teach me in it was to accept that sorrow does end. It might have taken years for mine to end, but He was faithful in bringing me through. I wish I was still as reliant on Him, that I hadn’t crumbled, but I am praying I will be close to Him again.

  • Dani Reedy

    When reflecting on this devotion, I want to dig deeper into what deep sorrow giving way to great joy means for me.

    When hurting, sometimes our instinct is to quickly speak of the joy that will come later. We want to bypass the phase of sorrow in the name of “positivity” and focus on the future joy. However, deep sorrow changes the person experiencing it forever. When we try to discuss future joy in the midst of sorrow, our “but joy is coming” phrases can sharpen the pain. Ultimately the phrase can dismisses grief. In the midst of my personal pain, I wanted comfort of close arms around me and tears to join mine. Romans 12:15 ““Be happy with those who are happy, and weep with those who weep.” We are allowed to experience great sorrow and grief and not have to focus on the joy that can come from it. Yes, my Father does bring joy after sorrow, but the sorrow from a deep hurt may always sting. The joy I have now doesn’t mean the sorrow was easier to bear. The pain lessens over time, but I believe the wound from that time in my life will always sting—which is ok. It’s ok to know that the deep sorrows in life leave scars. Even Jesus has scars ❤️. The sorrow from the cross can still be felt admits the joy of salvation. It doesn’t make the joy any less joyful. Both joy and sorrow give way to worship.

    And as new joy has come into my life, I do realize He has used my pain for good, just as He said I would: “He comforts us in all our troubles so that we can comfort others. When they are troubled, we will be able to give them the same comfort God has given us.” 2 Corinthians‬ ‭1:4‬ ‭NLT‬‬
    Now I can comfort others who walk the path of sorrow.
    So, Yes- He can use all things, even the moments of deep sorrow, for His glory.

    • Nicole Thrift

      So eloquently said, Dani!! I could not agree more! Thank you for sharing. :)

    • Ash

      Dani – thank you for sharing this perspective! It’s important to remember that the Lord is in all. Whenever we’re feeling sorrow, Jesus is there in it. He’s the Joy in our sorrows, even though the hurt is still real. I can attest to this and am thankful in the people who offered comfort and glimpses of the Father’s love through their actions when I was in the midst of sadness.

    • Caralee Lilly

      This is so true. Something that is so hard sometime…to linger in that time of sorrow so complete healing can take place. That weeping may not just endure for a night. We can only experience the fullness of His grace and healing power when we fully see where He is truly bringing us from.
      Thank you Dani… your words have given me to feel what I’m walking through today.

    • Emily W

      I love all of this! Thank you so much for your comment!

    • Danielle

      Thank you Dani, this really reflects how I’m feeling right now.

  • Monica Davis

    Deep sorrow makes way for great joy.

  • I love this so much. Weeping willows were among my favorites as a kid because it was so easy to hide behind their branches and with your analogy today, it has me realizing that is so much of what we do when we are stuck in what feels like a joyless period, we hide in whatever grief we are encountering. And just yesterday I was saddened to see the beautiful Red Bud Tree that hangs over our driveway had lost the bulk of its beautiful blossoms. Just two days ago I had delighted in the perfect little bumbles that chose the tree for its life giving nectar and now those fantastic blossoms were scattered like victims on the ground around me, it genuinely saddened me because we have had such a brief Spring this year and I enjoyed the color around me. I think it was a good picture of my life these past 14 months … it has felt like our family is in a permanent winter, waiting for a Spring of respite to give way only to find it so brief there feels to be no relief. Then as I called out, God reminded me that Spring is just the beginning. Yes, it is beautiful because it pushes its glorious way through the cold to say to the world, “I’m here, I AM alive” … but resting behind the area those blossoms pushed forth are these sweet, tender, little leaves that are slowly pushing out, soaking in the air, the sun AND the rain. And from all of that those tiny leaves that appear to have no worth just yet, will slowly grow a profound single cover that, in community with others, with provide shelter and shade. Life will burst within them and they’ll provide a gentle serenade in the winds of Summer. Sometimes seasons hurt and relief, beauty in the midst of them may seem so brief, but just like each season is necessary and no less important than the other to the tree, varying seasons are necessary for us too … they give way to fit our needs as we encounter life and however, long or short, they help to carve out who we are and to grow our reliance on the Lord. So today, as my family continues to be in its own waiting season, I will remember that all seasons come to an end and will anxiously anticipate what will burst forth from this seemingly perpetual winter.

  • Churchmouse

    I was sad for a year. Tears fell daily for 365 days. It was a dark time of great sorrow from which I was not sure I would emerge. I had lost all joy. Like David in this Psalm, I appealed to the Lord. I cried out to Him. I was poor in spirit, needy. I opened my Bible and soaked up every promise and clung to it as the life raft it is. One. Full. Year. Daily clinging by my fingertips. BUT GOD was faithful. He stayed close. He quietly walked through the valley with me. He wept with me as He held me. I see it now as a precious time. A time in which He gave me the gift of Himself. And He was exactly what I needed. The wound began to heal. Joy slowly returned. There is a scar still but it is a strong reminder of victory. Sorrow came for a season but joy in the Lord won out.

    • Angie

      Oh, your comment reminded me of my years after my dad died. I was just so sad and I didn’t really have any joy. And while I didn’t turn away from God, I felt disconnected— like when you’re looking for a radio station and there’s static. But even in those moments I never felt like He left me; I could tell He was there, silently walking with me. When I cried I know He was there just silently letting me physically manifest my grief. Isn’t it amazing that even in our deepest sadness when we may feel disconnected, He finds a way to let us know he is walking with us? Sending a big hug.

    • Tina

      Feeling that sadness… But God and joy won through for sure…
      I love you my friend. Hoping you are well… Sending hugs.. always..

    • Emily B.

      I love the image of our scars being reminders of victory. So good!

    • Kaitlin

      Thank you for this reminder, churchmouse. So grateful for the faithfulness we can and can’t yet see!

  • Alicia Hosan

    I recently read a book by Lauren Chandler called Steadfast Love, and while she works through Psalm 107, I am now seeing that phrase appear all over as I read through the Psalms and other parts of scripture. It’s used here 3 times, always with “abounding in” or “great” describing it. I am reminded that His love for me is unchanging and never failing and so much grander than I can imagine. And that love is a comfort in times of sorrow but also is there in the times of joy. I am so thankful for that faithfulness and love.

  • Kelly Chataine

    Gladden the soul of your servant. Now, that is an amazing statement. For only in God do we have hope, joy, and anticipation of a perfect eternity.

  • Jessica McCreary


  • Ivey Broxton

    I am too one that would love to avoid grief and sadness – I dread what is lurking around the next corner- I love the vision of the weeping willow – it’s tears / rain – are often later absorbed by its roots for growth and strength. Such a great read – and prayer !

  • Lisa Shinn

    I love the imagery of the weeping willow bowing to the Lord… amazing!!!

  • Reading this devotion made me realize that for right now, thankfully, there is not the deep, crusing sorrow that David is describing, in my life. I have things that I am anxious about – a new pastor coming, my parents, my husband’s health, my pregnant daughter, my job (4 more Mondays of school!), but none of this is soul crushing.
    My prayer is that God will teach me now, while things are calm and peaceful, how to deal with the time of sorrow that will come. I pray that He will draw me closer and closer to Him so that I automatically, without hesitation turn to Him.
    Papa God, continue to show me Your grace and mercy so that my faith is continually being built on the strong foundation of Your truth, so that when the storms come, they won’t wash me away. Never let me take for tranted that You saved me from the depths of hell and You have covered me with the blood of Your precious Son. If You did nothing else for me, this alone would be enough for me to praise and glorify You. The rest is just cake!
    “But you, O Lord, are a God merciful and gracious, slow to anger and abounding in steadfast love and faithfulness.”
    Be blessed, my sweet sisters.

    • Kristine Loughman

      What a perfect way to look at this psalm. I’m the same, no huge sorrow (thanks be to God), only four Mondays to go (I also teach), etc. But I love the idea that God can use the calm times to fill us up so we’re ready when the hard times come.

    • Bessie

      I prayed for your meeting with your siblings and Dad this weekend. May a spirit of love, peace and agreement settle upon your family. We are in a similar season and it can be difficult.

      • Kathy

        Thank you for the prayer. Our meeting went really well. It was a very sweet time with my dad. He was very receptive and open to our suggestions. Now we just need to be sure he follows through with them!! Being a parent to your parents is so hard to navigate. Thank you again for your prayers. I’ll be praying for you during this season, too.

  • Helen Pollard

    Beautiful and helpful. Thank you.

  • I love this so much and needed this. So does my mom so I will be sharing with her too. Thank you, thank you!

Further Reading...