I Will Remember (Psalm 77)

I Will Remember (Psalm 77)


  • Despair is a pervasive problem. And it is commonly associated with the night.
  • Maybe you are one of the millions in despair about one or both of the presidential candidates. Or maybe it is something more personal and private. Or maybe you can’t pinpoint a cause.
  • Regardless of what is causing your despair, Psalm 77 is sure to be a source of great comfort.

Read Psalm 77

  • The psalmist never receives an explanation for his circumstances.
  • He teaches us how to turn away from ourselves and to meditate upon God.

Kidner “By the end of the psalm the pervasive ‘I’ has disappeared, and the objective facts of the faith have captured all his attention and all of ours.”

  • When personal circumstances cause despair we must remember the actions and attributes of God.
    1. Inward Despair (1-9)
    2. Upward Hope (10-20)

Inward Despair (1-9)

  • Present Despair (1-4).
    • Praying until exhaustion (1-3)
    • Unable to sleep or pray (4)
  • Past Blessings (5-6)
    • Diligent effort to snap out of depression.
    • Ps. 42:8, Job 35:10.
  • Future Distress (7-9)
    • Reflecting on past brought confusion about the present and anxiety about the future.
    • His refusal to accept his circumstances left him in despair and doubt.
    • Rest came when he looked to God’s revelation rather than his circumstances.
  • WCF 18.4 “True believers may have the assurance of their salvation divers ways shaken, diminished, and intermitted…yet are they never utterly destitute…supported from utter despair.”

Tholuck, “Asaph’s faith did not waver; he knew that they who perseveringly and believingly knock at the door, will sooner or later get admittance…They are real men of prayer with whom, when answers fail to be forthcoming, the thirst for prayer gets not weakened, but inflamed with great ardor.”

  • Do you earnestly cry out to God in your despair? Do you persevere through the night if need be?
  • Are you willing to confess the reality of v.3?
  • Do you confess your doubts to God? In doing so, Asaph was able to see they contradicted what he knew to be true of the nature of God.

It is from these doubts Asaph could turn away from his inward despair and begin to look for an…

Upward Hope (10-20)

  • Asaph transitions his focus to the Lord (11-12).
    • Most High (10). NOT self.
    • Remember His deeds and wonders (11).
    • Ponder/meditate upon your work/deeds (12).
  • Direct address (13-20)
    • Song of Moses (Exod. 15:11).
    • You work wonders (14).
    • You redeem your people (15).
    • You have dominion over nature:
      • The waters are afraid (16).
      • The thunderstorm reflects your power (17-18).
    • You Lead:
      • By direction (19).
      • Through agents (20).
  • Harriet Beecher Stowe writes, “Uncle Tom’s faith was staggered. It really seemed to him that, in leaving Aunt Chloe and the children and his old companions, he was leaving God!”
  • Troubled and disoriented, Uncle Tom dreams of being back with little Eva who is reading to him from Isa. 43:2, “When thou passes through the waters, I will be with thee; for I am the Lord thy God, the Holy One of Israel, Thy Savior.”
  • Don’t cut the grieving process short, but don’t grieve just to grieve either. Christian’s should not become perpetual Eyore’s.
  • Be ready and willing to receive the Lord’s comfort.
  • Do you know the language of Scripture that you might use it in your prayers?
  • Redemptive History reveals God’s routine faithfulness to routinely unfaithful people. Reflecting upon it is as humbling as it is helpful.

When you experience inward despair remember to look upward for hope.


  • Although believers face the same trials as everyone else and may find themselves wrestling with despair, they have an unshakeable hope when they remember the works and attributes of their great God.
  • Jesus models prayer “with loud cries and tears, to him who was able to save him from death, and he was heard because of his reverence,” (Heb. 5:7).
  • Reflect upon the words that you pray when you face trials and temptations. Are they directed purely inward, or do you focus on God?
  • Consider praying through the Psalms in order to learn from their spirit-empowered praying.