This post of part of the book launch, Meeting God at Wits’ End: Hope for the Weary.
For God alone my soul waits in silence; from him comes my salvation.
While they may not feel like blessings, wits’ end does have many. For example, it weans us off the frivolity of this world with all its vanity. It teaches us the seriousness of life, death, eternity, and salvation. Most importantly, it directs us to God as our only hope.
When our mental resources have vanished through the struggles of life, not knowing what to do, there’s only one answer left—God. The prodigal son decided to return to his father after he had lost everything, “longing to be fed with the pods that the pigs ate” (Luke 15:16). That is the great lesson of wits’ end. It’s when we’ve come to the end of ourselves and must wholeheartedly resort to God.
Many times, we don’t realize how much we still look to people, material things, or pleasant circumstances for our soul’s well-being. It’s so easy to have greater hope and delight in a good paycheck, a retirement plan, or great health than in God. What if our paycheck diminishes or entirely disappears? What if we lose our health? How will we handle that?
Although we don’t know David’s particular circumstances, he had reached wits’ end and only God could come to his rescue. Throughout the psalms, salvation doesn’t only refer to eternal salvation from sin and God’s wrath, but also from difficult circumstances and afflictions.
God is not only the God of our eternal salvation, but also of all other salvations. That doesn’t necessarily mean we’ll be automatically delivered from our difficult circumstances, but it does mean that God will help us through it by His grace and power, even if they last a lifetime.
To wait in silence for God indicates the end of ourselves—we don’t know what to say or do. For a time, even words may fail us. The good news is that even our silence is a prayer—a prayer of need and dependence.
Amidst the silence, though, there’s hope and expectation. While we may go through great difficulty, God will never let the spark of our faith go out. Whatever we need, “from him comes my salvation,” either to deliver us from or sustain us through it. Wits’ end is meant to make us entirely God-centered.
Jesus, help me to wait on You, trusting that You’ll see me through.
The Devotional Writer