The idea of these little devotionals is simple. I want to approach scripture with the understanding that God is speaking. I’m reading through the Bible and listening for God to ask me questions. I expect these questions to be fairly open-ended and plan to carry them in my mind throughout the day. I’ll share these questions with you in the hope that you find them challenging and helpful.
The book of Psalms is commonly thought of as a collection of the worship music of the Israelites. They were meant to be sung. These are worship songs that God appreciated enough to make sure they were preserved for us. Let’s see if we can find out why…
Blessed is the one who considers the poor![a]
In the day of trouble the Lord delivers him;
2 the Lord protects him and keeps him alive;
he is called blessed in the land;
you do not give him up to the will of his enemies.
3 The Lord sustains him on his sickbed;
in his illness you restore him to full health.[b]
4 As for me, I said, “O Lord, be gracious to me;
heal me,[c] for I have sinned against you!”
5 My enemies say of me in malice,
“When will he die, and his name perish?”
6 And when one comes to see me, he utters empty words,
while his heart gathers iniquity;
when he goes out, he tells it abroad.
7 All who hate me whisper together about me;
they imagine the worst for me.[d]
8 They say, “A deadly thing is poured out[e] on him;
he will not rise again from where he lies.”
9 Even my close friend in whom I trusted,
who ate my bread, has lifted his heel against me.
10 But you, O Lord, be gracious to me,
and raise me up, that I may repay them!
11 By this I know that you delight in me:
my enemy will not shout in triumph over me.
12 But you have upheld me because of my integrity,
and set me in your presence forever.
13 Blessed be the Lord, the God of Israel,
from everlasting to everlasting!
Amen and Amen.
From this passage I hear God asking me:
Be honest. Don’t you think this psalm is a little self-centered?
Did you notice how much the writer speaks about himself?
Shouldn’t your worship be focused on me?
Do you think I am offended by this?
So, why do you think I liked it well enough to preserve it?
Now let me ask you this:
Do you ever feel this way?
Are you ever burdened by people talking trash about you?
Have you ever felt betrayed by a friend?
Aren’t you ever mad at me?
Go ahead and tell me about it. I can take it.
I am not offended when you bring your true self to me.
I am offended when you don’t.
Or, worse, when you take your true self elsewhere.
What do you think worship is?
Come to me first, with everything you are, no matter what.
Is God asking you anything more, or anything different?
I’d love to hear from you in the comments below.