A young woman went to a fortuneteller. The fortuneteller said, “Dai, magminyo ka. Pero for the first 10 years, mag-antus ka.” (Young lady, you will get married. But for the first 10 years, you will suffer.)
The young lady asked, “After 10 years, unsay mahitabo nako.” (After 10 years, what will happen?)
The fortuneteller said, “After 10 years, ma-anad na ka.” (After 10 years, you will get used to it.)
Can you imagine grieving for the first 10 years of your married life? That’s what happened to Asaph. “When my soul was embittered, when I was pricked in heart” (Ps. 73:21, ESV). “Pricked” (ESV) is from shanan, “to pierce through (as with grief Ps. 73:21)” (TWOT/OTWS). “Heart” (ESV) is not singular, but plural, “my reins” (KJV) or “my reins” (NKJV), from the Hebrew, kilyah, “kidneys,” “fig. the mind (as the interior self)” (Strong). Asaph’s envy and bitterness against the wicked really pierced his mind and heart. It pierced him with so much grief. The verb form of the Hebrew expresses a continuing piercing of grief in the past.
Maybe he couldn’t sleep at night sometimes. He tried to understand why good things were happening to bad people. Then he began to doubt. But let me ask you, in his disappointment and depression, what was he really doubting? I think he was doubting the goodness of God to His people. How do I know? Because that’s how he concluded in v. 1 and repeated in v. 28. “Truly God is good to Israel, To such as are pure in heart . . . But it is good for me to draw near to God; I have put my trust in the Lord God, That I may declare all Your works” (Ps. 73:1, 28, NKJV).
He doubted the goodness of God. He doubted the sovereignty of God. He lost faith in the controlling justice of God to the wicked. He stopped trusting in the mercy of God to the righteous.
Until one day, when Asaph entered the sanctuary. I think Asaph came to God just as he was—embittered and all. It’s okay to come to God just as you are—with all your bitter complaints. There’s an old hymn that says, “Just as I am without one plea, but that thy blood was shed for me. And that thou biddest me come, to thee, O Lamb of God, I come, I come.” That’s what Asaph did.
It’s okay to enter into worship with all your distress in life, with all your bitterness. God will still accept you, if you come through Christ!
What are you facing today? Enter into the sanctuary of God. The sanctuary of God is the holy place of God, where you meet God and God meets you. There, you call on God in prayer. There, you meditate on His Word. There, you will see things differently.