Have you read it recently?
If you have, you've probably passed over it fairly quickly, as I have done most times I've read it.
I'm not sure there's a more depressing Psalm in all of Scripture.
The Sons of Korah wrote it - for the music director!
I can't imagine this being a song our worship leader would ever pick for Sunday morning...
It wouldn't even make it into the bad-country-music category.
Unlike most psalms, this one doesn't even end well...It's not delivered with the words, "But God..."
It's not gift wrapped with answers, or embellished with a bow, when all is said and done.
I like the ones that remind me that when I am troubled God is my refuge and strength.
I like the psalm that declares my God is NEAR to the broken-hearted.
It's right up there with a John Steinbeck novel, whose theme resounds with the word: HOPELESS.
So, why does God deem it worth putting in the canon?
Why play a song like this on the radio for our lives?
Apparently there is a vital reason for it being in Scripture, and it is for us to determine those reasons...
I've come up with a few...you can probably add some more (& I'd love to hear them)...
1. We live in a messy, broken, fractured, sinful, and decaying world (period, exclamation mark)...so, of course, hardship happens.
2. Psalm 88 is an invitation to be honest with the Lord...to be as vulnerable as we want...to complain as loudly as we need... He wants us to know that He can handle it (probably better than our friends can).
3. Being in relationship with Jesus, doesn't mean we get to bypass the tough stuff...and, it doesn't mean that the Lord loves us any less...After all, HE IS LOVE!! That's His very nature.
5. The Lord's agenda doesn't always allow for my personal happiness and satisfaction; His ways are mysterious and beyond understanding (it's what makes Him God), but in no way is He less good.
6. In the WAITING ROOM, instead of getting stranded in the middle of our story, we can, and are called to, TRUST the God who is SOVEREIGNLY working His plan for those who love Him and are called according to His purposes.