I have always had a great love for the whole Bible, but the Psalms hold a special place in my heart. I love the poetry, since I am a poet. I appreciate the raw emotion that comes across in the various psalms. The emotions that I feel in my life I find expressed in the book of Psalms from people who I greatly admire such as King David.
I find myself feeling down more often than I would like and sometimes I beat myself up for that. I remember writing about how I was feeling and sharing my thoughts and then not long after that as I was reading through the Psalms, I came across a sentiment from David that captured exactly how I had felt. It made me feel so much better. The verse was in Psalm 142:4 and it says, “Look to the right and see; For there is no one who regards me; There is no escape for me; No one cares for my soul.” David of all people felt alone at times and he let it be known.
The Psalms refresh my soul because the psalmists are not afraid to say what is truly on their hearts. If they are depressed, they express that sentiment, but they are careful not to stay in a negative state of mind. When all else fails they look to God and they remember the good He has done. Psalm 42 is a good example of this. It is a very depressing psalm, but in the midst of despair the psalmist says in Psalm 42:6, “O my God, my soul is in despair within me; Therefore I remember You from the land of the Jordan And the peaks of Hermon, from Mount Mizar.” The key for the psalmist here is to remember God from a more positive time in his life. If God was good in the past, the psalmist knows He is still good and things will not stay bad forever.
I receive comfort in the book of Psalms because the psalmists have been where I have been, but I also find much inspiration in the Psalms. They make me want to be a better person and stir up my desire to draw closer to God. When I read verses like Psalm 119:20 that says, “My soul is crushed with longing After Your ordinances at all times,” I want to have that level of devotion. Psalm 119:131 says,“I opened my mouth wide and panted, For I longed for Your commandments.” How I wish that I longed for God’s commandments in that way.
Another thing that I love about the book of Psalms is that they are full of praise for God. I want my life to be full of praise for my God. He most certainly is worthy of all praise. “Let everything that has breath praise the LORD. Praise the LORD!” (Psalm 150:6). The Psalms of the Bible let me know that it is okay to be down sometimes and it is okay to express how I am feeling. They inspire me to a greater devotion to God and His commandments. They exhort me to praise God.
God welcomes honesty. He can certainly handle anything we throw at Him. I believe the Psalms teach this lesson. I would love to hear your thoughts about the book of Psalms. Perhaps you can share a favorite psalm or verse within the Psalms.
“Scripture taken from the NEW AMERICAN STANDARD BIBLE(R), Copyright (C) 1960,1962,1963,1968,1971,1972,1973,1975,1977,1995 by The Lockman Foundation. Used by permission.”
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