Showing posts with label pslams. Show all posts
Showing posts with label pslams. Show all posts

Reminding Ourselves

As I was reading through Psalm 71 in my morning devotions I recalled an old hymn called, Remind Me Dear Lord. I only remember a few of the phrases of that old song but sometimes it's really how I feel. At times I really need Him to remind me that I am still His child, He still loves me and He is still with me. Other times I need to remind myself of these solid truths.

I assume that David wrote Psalm 71 but it doesn't say that for sure - just that it is a prayer of an old man. Sometimes caregiving wears us down until we can just feel old. This Psalm was a great reminder for me this morning.

First of all, I noticed the things the psalmist reminded himself of regarding how he had reacted to God. He said things like:


  • In You I have taken refuge
  • Be to me a rock - to which I can continually come...
  • My mouth is filled with Your praise
  • I will hope continually; I will praise you more
  • I will make mention of Your righteousness - Yours alone
  • I will praise you with the harp
  • I will sing praises with the lyre
  • My lips will shout for joy when I sing praises to You
  • My tongue will utter Your righteousness all day long
That's a lot of determination, hope and courage right there! Maybe he can say these things because they are mixed in with a variety of declarations he makes regarding his relationship with God. He says things like:

  • You are my refuge
  • You are my rock and fortress
  • You are my hope
  • By You I've been sustained since birth
  • You took me from my mother's womb
  • You are my strong refuge
  • You have taught me from my youth
These are all powerful statements of faith, I think. He is declaring his absolute trust and confidence in God and reminding himself of all God has done over the years of his life. As caregivers it can be easy to feel like God and life have forsaken us and left us to drown in day to day responsibilities. These are some wonderful declarations we can make that help us remember who He is to us - and help us remind ourselves that we will continue to trust and stand.

But here's the other thing I noticed in this Psalm: the psalmist sheer desperation. Right in the middle of trusting Him and hoping in Him the writer lets us see the pain that's in his heart. He says things like:

  • Listen to me and save me
  •  Rescue me from the hand of the wicked
  • Do not cast me off 
  • Do not forsake me when my strength fails
  • Do not be far from me
  • Do not forsake me
For some reason this really encouraged me today- to see that the psalmist was in a state of despair with trouble all around and yet he did what was important and needful. He called on God for help, ran to him for refuge and continued to declare his trust in Him.

Today my meditation will not be on surrounding troubles or on the struggles we face as caregivers. My thoughts will be on the fact that I'm gong to continue to trust Him no matter what a day brings. I will sing. I will praise. I will continue to run to Him. I'll take some time today to think about all I have seen Him do in my life and in the lives of those I love; and I will be thankful. Will you join me?

The Hidden King

Psalm 57 has been a passage that I have held on to for many years now. I was sick in 1987 with a mystery illness that none of the many doctors ever figured out. All we know is everyone thought I was going to die and then one day I started slowly getting better, obviously touched by His hand. During that time I discovered Psalm 57:1 - Be merciful unto me O Lord, be merciful unto me for my soul trusts in You, and in the shadow of Your wings I will take refuge until these calamities are past. Well, eventually the calamity passed but in the process I did learn much about trusting Him and hiding in His shelter.

 The other verse in this Psalm that sticks out to me is verse 7. David (hiding in the cave from King Saul) starts out by talking about hiding in the Lord's shelter and in this verse it seems to me that he is making a declaration about his own heart. The hiding king states: my heart is steadfast, O God, my heart is steadfast...I will sing, yes, I will sing praises! To me he is declaring that no matter how bleak his outward circumstances are looking he will remain steadfast, trusting in the Lord and he's even gonna sing!

I think it might read more like this if I was penning the psalm I will sing? yes...I will sing. Singing does not seem to match the situation does it? Here is the future king - and he knows it! - hiding from a mad man yet determined to stay hidden in God and to keep his heart steadfast before Him...and even thinking about singing in the cave!

He then encourages himself and tells his soul to wake up! and give thanks. He did not thank God for the cave. He did not thank God for riches, peace or health. He thanked God for the things in his life that remain even while hiding in a cave. Think about it - he certainly did not feel rich, there was no peace in the natural, and he was not too concerned about getting out to the gym that morning or eating a well balanced diet. It was far less than perfect circumstances by our American standards.

 So he began to thank God for some of His constants....His lovingkindness and His truth. Two things that never change or fail in the face of life's circumstances. So maybe we feel hidden in a cave brought about by life's harsh circumstances; let us rejoice today in His truth and His mercy that never fail!

Inseparable

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