Summary: Lessons from God are often better taught in a dark cave.
Have you felt like you were in a cave driven there by despair, sin, your physical or spiritual enemies? It's dark and dank and you wonder if God sees your predicament and cares. You are afraid to even look out the entrance lest your enemies find you and torment you.
David had a similar experience. Here he is to be the next king and the current one has him hiding in a cave to save his life and that of his men. Not exactly the kind of lifestyle for a future king. Not the kind of situation we children of the King expect to find ourselves in as we march towards Zion.
Psa 142:1 Maschil of David; A Prayer when he was in the cave. I cried unto the LORD with my voice; with my voice unto the LORD did I make my supplication.
Note the word Maschil. It means instruction and David is sharing the instruction he received in the cave while waiting on God and seeking His face. We also can learn from this instruction.
I find it interesting that I was led to this Psalm as I was in a cabin last weekend nicknamed the Cave. I went to fast and pray and seek relief from my enemies, me being the chief one. My cave was far more comfortable than the one David was in.
I went there to cry unto the Lord as he did. I had asked for prayer from my family and friends as well as several Internet prayer groups. I requested that those who knew how to pray would pray demon scaring prayers as the average lay me down to sleep and bless him Lord prayers were not what I needed.
We need to pray such prayers. David cried out in anguish or as one who cries that is in danger. Have you ever seen someone in deep grief at a grave site? I have seen too many while I was in the Dover AFB Honor Guard during Viet Nam. They don't just softly say, “Woe is me.” They are loudly weeping, wailing and groaning. Have you ever heard someone cry for help or scream when they are frightened? There is no reserved, “Excuse me, Sir, could you help me?” or a soft. “Oh, that was scary.” They are trying to get the whole world to hear them in their trouble or fear.
If you ever heard someone from a Charismatic background or an old Baptist from the South pray, you have an idea of what kind of praying David was doing. Those folks call the roll and name names while calling for angels to wallop the devil. They are serious!
The old office of Compline is an end of day prayer. "I confess to almighty God, the Father,
the Son, and the Holy Ghost, and before all the company of Heaven, that I have sinned, in thought,
word, and deed, through my fault, my own grievous fault; wherefore I pray, almighty God, to have
mercy upon me, to forgive all my sins, and to make clean my heart within me."
Now that is praying! When you are making a supplication for something you really need you are going to be a bit emotional and loud. When your kids really wanted something at the store they did not just say, “Oh dear Father, might I have some candy, please?” No, they got animated. They jumped up and down, gyrated and got that pleading face as they yelled, “Candy! Daddy! Please, Daddy! Daddy! Daddy! Please! Please! Please!!!” especially if you initially say no. Then they will get more animated as they tell you why they desperately need it and promise to do two extra chores for infinity and beyond or not punch their siblings anymore.