David prayed: ‘Turn to me and have mercy, for I am alone and in deep distress. My problems go from bad to worse. Oh, save me from them all!…See how many enemies I have and how viciously they hate me! Protect me! Rescue my life from them! Do not let me be disgraced, for in you I take refuge. May integrity and honesty protect me, for I put my hope in you’ (v.16-21 NLT). We all have areas where we’re weaker and more vulnerable, where our integrity is most likely to be tested, and where we’re more at risk of giving in to temptation. Here are four ways that we can protect ourselves in our most vulnerable areas: 1) By staying close to God. When we’re lonely, distancing from God doesn’t make sense. It can increases our exposure to things that could be harmful to our physical, emotional and spiritual selves, as we look to other things to find comfort. Instead, we should turn to God. 2) By coming out of hiding. If we try getting to know others and letting them get to know and care for us, we become more willing to be transparent and open, and less likely to hide away our struggles. 3) By taking the focus off ourselves. Victory comes by reaching out to those in need; by giving our time to help them, praying for them, loving and serving them. 4) By forgiving those who’ve hurt us. Isolating ourselves when we’ve been hurt just leads to bitterness. We should turn it over to God, let Him deal with the offender, and ask Him to help us forgive.
Read Psalm 25:21 again. Each time you pray this week, try ending your prayer time with those words.
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