Ever felt like God was far away, uninterested, or worse yet, that He had abandoned you? You’re not alone. In Psalm 13, David expresses the raw emotion of wondering where God is when he needs Him the most. Far from being unspiritual, cries of lament create a dialogue of honesty with God that actually moves us closer to Him. God never wants us to fake it. Whether we feel God’s presence or not, we can, through faith, find Him even in our deepest disappointments.

Discussion Questions

A lament is a complaint. Is complaining to God allowed? Under what circumstances might God welcome a complaint from people who are talking to Him in prayer?

In Psalm 13, David expresses his lament toward God. Read verses 1-2. Four times David asks the question, “how long?” What feelings are expressed in these four questions?

In verses 3-4 David moves from questions to God to requests of God. What is David asking in these verses? Can you describe a personal experience that resembles what you see in these verses?

Verses 5-6 describe a turning point in Psalm 13. What change in David do you see in these verses? What choice is he making? How have you moved from despair to hope?

Sometimes our despair begins when we doubt the goodness of God. How do you trust the goodness of God when His timetable seems so different from yours?

The practice of gratitude can be a powerful remedy to despair and discouragement. Take a few minutes right now, and list 10 things you’re grateful for. Get as specific as you can. It’s a worthy exercise!

Further Reading

Break Their Teeth, God

There are some songs of the heart that we might rather not sing out loud. They express thoughts and feelings that are brutal and dark - feelings we'd rather others not know we feel. There are Song of the Heart in the Bible that curse others or invoke evil and they...

Songs from the Heart Reading Plan Week 4

WEEK FOUR Songs of Judgment The notion of blessing is one that Christians are quite comfortable with - the idea of cursing not so much. While we don’t want to spend time with people who abuse power or commit injustices, we don’t like the idea of wishing harm on them....

Songs from the Heart Reading Plan Week 3

WEEK THREE Songs of Lament When we are heartbroken or angry at the way life has turned out, it can be tempting to turn away from God and write Him off. But David and the other psalmists didn’t hide their feelings of disappointment in God. They felt all the feels and...

I Take Refuge in You

It seems like we spend a lot of our time searching. We chase money, relationships, fame, and plenty of other things, hoping that some of it will deliver a sense of goodness, security, and joy. But those searches ultimately leave us wanting. We tend to forget that...

Songs from the Heart Reading Plan Week 2

WEEK TWO Songs of Confidence Have you ever been awake in the middle of the night feeling overwhelmed or afraid? When David and the other psalmists were feeling this way, they expressed their unfailing confidence in the goodness, power and deliverance of God. This week...