A Very Present Help
From YouVersion God Hears Us Pray “Reading Plan
Imagine being in a desperate situation and calling out for help but having no confidence that anyone is able to hear your call. Sometimes our prayers feel like a message in a bottle: we make a passionate plea for help but we have no idea if the message will ever reach anyone, and even then, how can we be sure the person who picks up the bottle will care about our situation or be able to do anything to help?
Mercifully, prayer is not like this. God hears. And he cares. And he is able.
Psalm 46:1 (ESV)1 God is our refuge and strength, a very present help in trouble.
The wording is interesting. What does it mean that he is VERY present? "Very" is an intensifier, but we don't usually intensify the word "present." You're either there or you're not. But the Psalmist does not want us to undervalue God's presence: He is VERY PRESENT when we are in trouble.
Read through the rest of the Psalm. Everything in the world around you can fall apart, but God is there. And he is all that matters. When the world is crumbling all around—even if it literally crumbles but certainly if it does so metaphorically—we don't need to be worried.
The end of the Psalm has given comfort to God's people for thousands of years: Be still and know that he is God.
Psalm 46:10 (ESV)10 “Be still, and know that I am God. I will be exalted among the nations, I will be exalted in the earth!”
As long as we are desperately fighting to rectify our situation, we may miss the unmistakable reality that God is right there with us. But if we can pause in prayer and be mindful of his presence, then we will know the only thing that matters: he is God.