How do you pray for those in government, big corporations, mainstream media, the justice system, the medical profession, universities and schools, who make it blatantly obvious that they care for nothing but their own reputations, pay packets and egos, and they’re oblivious to the suffering they’re causing others?
Psalm 109 comes to the rescue, which amazingly David put to music when he prayed about the uncaring, lying, hate-filled, slandering, awful people he also knew who clearly “never thought of doing a kindness, but hounded to death the poor and the needy and the brokenhearted,” verse 16 (The Message).
The tone of David’s prayer for such people is shocking too. He asked God to “send the Evil One” and “dispatch Satan” to give such people a short life, make orphans of their children, have strangers like vultures pick them clean, and “may there be no one around to help them out” too. Strong words. And there’s more of them too – about God making these awful selfish people homeless and penniless, and wiping their names from memory. And since they find no pleasure in blessing others, may they themselves be cursed every day of the week (verses 6-17).
Well, that doesn’t sound very nice, does it? But David knew exactly what these people were like, because he was one of their victims. They’d broken his heart too (verse 22), made him an object of scorn (verse 25), and reduced him to skin and bone (verse 24). He knew the effect these awful people had, and it was more than he could bear.
So he prayed, “May (all these awful things mentioned above) be the Lord’s payment to those who speak evil of me,” verse 20. In other words, “Bless ‘em good!” – the “good” being that they get the point that “God stands at the right hand of the needy one,” verse 31. That’s what they need to know, that God is real and he cares. Whatever it takes, therefore, to “let them know that,” verse 27, is what we can pray for.
We can also pray, as David did in verse 26, for God’s help to save us “in accordance with his love” – to “bless us good” too – so we don’t end up bitter and frustrated because of these awful people, but rather, because we know from this Psalm that God is all for us praying our hearts out to him, we experience his calming love like David did.