A Bent of Affection
“Then they cry unto the LORD in their trouble, and he saveth them out of their distresses.” -Psalm 107:19
The poor woman prayed with good will, with a bent of affection. Why is crying used in praying? Had it not been more modesty to speak to this soul-redeeming Savior, who hears sometimes before we pray, than to cry out and shout? for the disciples do after complain, that “she crieth so after them.” Was Christ so difficult to be entreated? The reasons of crying are: want cannot blush. The pinching necessity of the saints is not tied to the law of mod- esty. Hunger cannot be ashamed. “I mourn in my complaint, and make a noise” (Ps. 55:2); and Hezekiah, “Like a crane or a swallow, so did I chatter; I did mourn as a dove” (Isa. 38:14). “I went mourning without the sun; I stood up, and I cried in the congregation” (Job 30:28). Second, though God hear prayer, only as prayer offered in Christ, not, because very fervent; yet fervor is a heavenly ingredient in prayer. An arrow drawn with full strength has a speedier issue; therefore, the prayers of the saints are expressed by crying in Scripture. “O my God, I cry by day, and thou hearest not.” (Ps. 22:2); “At noon will I pray, and cry aloud” (Ps. 55:17); “In my distress I cried to the Lord” (Ps. 18:6); “Unto thee have I cried, O Lord” (Ps. 88:13); “Out of the depths have I cried” (Ps. 130:1)…There is violence offered to God in fervent prayer. Moses is answered, when he is wres- tling with God by prayer for the people, “Now, therefore, let me alone, that my anger may wax hot against them” (Exod. 32:10). “Let me alone,” is a word of putting violent hands on any.
*Excerpted from Daily Readings – The Puritans (Christian Heritage, 2012).
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