A call for fire signals a longing for rescue, a desperate need for security and evidence that we are not alone in the battle. Whether a soldier sends out a request for artillery fire, close air support, or reinforcements, or a hurting individual or group prays for relief, the caller for fire craves a quick response, an acknowledgement that they are not alone in the battle. They want a sign that help is coming, that there is purpose in continuing to fight.

The lament that we call Psalm 28 is that kind of call for fire. Its sender (composer) confesses fear that no response will come, that God will ignore the message. The psalmist addresses God as the root of security. God is a Rock, but the prayer reveals uncertainty as to whether footing will be secure. A sense of desperation is tangible:

“To you, LORD, I call; you are my Rock, do not turn a deaf ear to me. For if you remain silent, I will be like those who go down to the pit. Hear my cry for mercy as I call to you for help, as I lift up my hands toward your Most Holy Place” (Psalm 28:1-2).

In radio communication, a frantic call for aid may not be heard if it is sent out on the wrong frequency. The sender waits vainly for a response to a message that his or her headquarters never heard. In prayer, our expectations may be so firmly defined that we refuse to acknowledge any other indication that our God answered our request. We may be so convinced of the justice of our own cause that we ignore evidence to the contrary and so plead for something that is contrary to God’s will. In this prayer, the psalmist signals his fear of hearing no answer by urging God not to ignore him, by identifying God’s silence as a death sentence, by stressing repeatedly his need for his cry for mercy to be heard.

He fears that God will ignore him and punish him as if he were one of their common enemy, the wicked. He fears being taken out by divine “friendly fire.” In good call for fire format, he identifies the enemy, asks for specific appropriate action against them, and explains the reason for such action. He prays,

“Do not drag me away with the wicked, with those who do evil, who speak cordially with their neighbors but harbor malice in their hearts. Repay them for their deeds and for their evil work; repay them for what their hands have done and bring back on them what they deserve” (Psalm 28:3-4).

Continue at: https://callforfireseminar.wordpress.com/2021/01/29/prayer-when-god-is-silent/