That's what the heading to Psalm 74 says in my bible. Then David goes on to give God a litany of reasons he feels He is not defending His cause: your foes have roared; they set your sanctuary on fire; they profane your name; we don't see any signs; why do you hold back your hand?
I wept with a friend the other night, a litany of reasons making us sure God is not defending his cause. There has been a burden on my heart for weeks now for another friend, one prayer fighting for space amongst the others: why, oh God, won't you pull through for them? I get an email last night asking: where is God in the middle of this?
I won't deny there's a flame of hope in me making it easier for me to have faith, and I won't deny that at the thought of the gospel my tears are close at hand, it is easy for me to see God these days. But I'm not so far from three months ago, six months ago, a year ago, that I forget kicking the tires of my totaled car or shouting at God for His lack of provision. I haven't forgotten the lump in my throat walking through the doors every single Sunday, the guilt accompanying a girl without faith. I'm not so far from asking "Why do you hold back your hand?"
I remember that.
Another translation captions Psalm 74 this way: He remembers His cause.
What that means is, "I remember how hard this is; I remember how difficult it is to believe in Me; I remember your pangs and your tears and the pain that accompanies all of these questions. I remember you."
. . . . . . . . . . . . . . .
Sometimes I think God's cause is to bring heaven to earth. I think His cause is to prove to us that we are peons, but He is gracious to us anyway. Sometimes I think God's cause, His end-goal, is to establish a grand kingdom with Him as King. Sometimes I think He is heading up his army of pro-bono volunteers to work this grand plan of His, kept secret from us until the very end.
But today, this week, this month, I remember that I am His cause. I am part of His kingdom on earth, part of the army who prays, "...on earth as it is in heaven." I am his cause and Jesus is the way.
And He remembers me.
And He shapes and crafts these hard things through which I walk for me.
And He defends me. My squabbles and failures and falters and wrong turns--He defends against people who might object to them being a part of His design for me.
I know how selfish this sounds, how egotistical I must be to believe that God isn't more concerned with wars and rumors of wars, starving children and world politics. But this is why I am a Christian after all. Because He has dipped Himself down to earth and made Himself real to me. Because I haven't been forgotten.
Because thousands of years ago He delivered a message to a young girl-child, impregnated that single girl, birthed a baby in the middle of squalor, raised that boy in the sight of people who wanted to murder him, nailed that man to a cross and accomplished His plan for His Son.
Because He defends His cause and we are His cause. We are the cause.