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Praying Psalm 10 in Times of Trouble

Aaron D'Anthony Brown

Contributing Author
Published: Sep 24, 2021
Praying Psalm 10 in Times of Trouble

The Book of Psalms is seen by some believers as a book comprised of many human emotions. There are references to doubt, fear, happiness, and more. The mixture of positive and negative experiences written by the psalmists makes the book ideal for people today. We too face these emotions, sometimes without the same level of trust in God as they evoked.

For that reason, when we read the Book of Psalms we’re reminded that not only are our emotions natural but that God understands. Others have been where we are, and much like they did, we too can overcome by placing our trust in the Lord.

Psalm 10 provides a great example, a reminder that though life brings suffering, God is a present help in times of trouble.

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The Context of Psalm 10

The Context of Psalm 10

This chapter is one of 50 in the entire Book of Psalms written by an unknown author. The mystery person begins writing with a petition to God. The complaint is clear—he feels distant from the Lord and thus asks a question, one that we can personally understand. He inquires, “Lord, why do you stand so far away? Why do you hide in times of trouble?” (Psalm 10:1).

From there the complaint grows, not only does he feel distant from God, but he has a clear perspective of the injustice occurring around him. He sees firsthand how people who are not God-fearing and are evil spend their time. His distance from God is coupled with a close proximity to the wicked. He watches as they commit unrighteous acts without fear of retribution.

“In all his scheming, the wicked person arrogantly thinks, ‘There’s no accountability, since there’s no God.’” (Psalm 10:4)

This too is an idea we can understand as sometimes we witness people or groups achieve evil deeds in the world. We are left to wonder why God does not immediately thwart their plans. The psalmist definitely isn’t pleased with the wicked, nor is he happy that their actions seemingly go unchecked. Still, he comes back to an important truth—one we too need to remember.

“Lord, you have heard the desire of the humble; you will strengthen their hearts. You will listen carefully, doing justice for the fatherless and the oppressed so that mere humans from the earth may terrify them no more.” (Psalm 10:17-18)

God is in control of any and all circumstances, no matter how bleak they may appear. He is not ignorant of our sins nor the actions of others. We can expect that God to bring justice, in this time or the next, but always when He is ready.

With this idea in mind, we can use Psalm 10 to guide us in praying to God, especially in those times of trouble.

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woman standing in dark in front of light

“Lord, why do you stand so far away? Why do you hide in times of trouble?” (Psalm 10:1)

Often we ask God questions like this in moments of loneliness and despair. During the rough times, we feel like we need God the most, but we also think He’s so far away. Despite the negative feelings that may prevail, God is always near. The psalmist began the passage with this question, but ended with acknowledgement of God’s power. Let’s do the same.

Heavenly Father,

There is trouble in the world, in my community, and even within me. Sometimes the darkness grows thick and threatens to swallow me whole. I try praying, but feel like you are so far away. Too far away to hear. What I want to ask is that you remind me of the truth. Remind me that you are an ever-present help in times in trouble. Show me your power, your glory. Show me that I am safe with you.

No matter how I feel, my feelings don’t dictate the truth. Scripture says you would never leave me nor forsake me. Jesus said to His disciples He would be with them until the end of the age. God you are with me, even now, even in the darkness. I want to believe, please help my unbelief.

In Jesus’ name, Amen.

“Break the arm of the wicked, evil person, until you look for his wickedness, but it can’t be found.” (Psalm 10:15)

Dear Lord,

There has always been evil in the world. Sometimes though I wonder if evil has grown worse over the years. From our politicians to schools to foreign countries, there are so many people who are not concerned with doing right. I see this at my job, in my family. While I want to be God-fearing, there are those who want to be godless. And some live their lives for evil.

God, how long will these people go unchecked? How long will they be allowed to bring ruin to the lives of others, to our children?

I understand that evil and sin exist in the world, so I pray for the evil to be exposed. I pray that people would be made aware of the corruption around us, the evil occuring in other communities and in places abroad. Where there is unrighteousness, I pray that you act against what is wrong.

Break the schemes of the wicked so that the righteous may prosper.


“Lord, you have heard the desire of the humble; you will strengthen their hearts. You will listen carefully.” (Psalm 10:17)

Father God,

Thank you for hearing the prayers of your children. Thank you for being concerned with our lives, past, present, and future. From the moment we were conceived to the point when we die, you watch over us. I’m grateful.

I want to say thank you for hearing our prayers. When we call to you early in the morning and when we speak late at night, you hear every word. You understand us when we don’t understand ourselves. You see into our hearts, no matter what emotion we feel. Thank you for being ever-present. Happy or sad, excited or afraid, you are with us.

In Jesus’ name, I say thank you, and Amen.

Photo Credit: © Unsplash/Chad Madden

headshot of author Aaron BrownAaron D'Anthony Brown is a freelance writer, hip-hop dance teacher, and visual artist, living in Virginia. He currently contributes work to iBelieve, Crosswalk, and supports various clients through the platform Upwork. He's an outside-the-box thinker with a penchant for challenging the status quo. Check out his short story “Serenity.”

This article is part of our larger Prayer resource meant to inspire and encourage your prayer life when you face uncertain times. Remember, the Holy Spirit intercedes for us and God knows your heart even if you can't find the words to pray. 

Prayer for God's Help
Prayer for Strength
Prayer for Protection
Morning Prayers
Good Night Prayers

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Originally published Friday, 24 September 2021.