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TODAY’S BIBLE READING:
1 Chronicles 1:1–2:17
TODAY’S BIBLE VERSE(S):
Psalm 3:3 (CSB): “But you, LORD, are a shield around me, my glory, and the one who lifts up my head.”
REFLECTIONS ON TODAY’S BIBLE VERSE(S):
At our recent Wednesday prayer meeting, I spoke to the folks at First Baptist Church of Polk City from Psalm 3. I pointed out that Psalms was the book that God used to inform my understanding of what prayer is and how it works like no other book.
As we dug into the text, I noted that our prayers don’t need to follow formulas. In fact, it would be better if they didn’t.
As we read the Psalms, we can’t help but realize that the writers knew how to take their problems seriously but get to a good place in their minds by the end of the prayer.
So, let’s take a brief look at the flow of Psalm 3 and consider how it might help us in our own prayers.
First, the Psalmist (David) started with acknowledging his problem. He didn’t come into the Lord’s presence with thanksgiving and praise … at least not in this prayer. This prayer started with an acknowledgment of the nature of his problem.
Psalm 3:1-2 (CSB): “LORD, how my foes increase! There are many who attack me. Many say about me, ‘There is no help for him in God.’ Selah”
So, my friend, when life is hard, tell the Lord all about it. If you can’t find it in your heart to begin your prayers with thanksgiving and praise (Psalm 100:4), then just be real. Tell the Lord exactly what’s on your heart.
Second, we observe the Psalmist moving to faith. Instead, of groveling in his problems, he chose to exercise his faith in who God is and what God had done previously in his life.
Psalm 3:3-4 (CSB): “But you, LORD, are a shield around me, my glory, and the one who lifts up my head. I cry aloud to the LORD, and he answers me from his holy mountain. Selah”
So, don’t get stuck praying about your problems. Move toward faith. Reflect on who God is and what He has previously done in your life. Let your thoughts be informed by Scripture.
Third, let your faith be so real that it enables you to relax and rest even as the problems persist around you. Let your knowledge of who God is and what He has previously done for you let you move to trust Him and find rest for your soul.
Psalm 3:5-6 (CSB): “I lie down and sleep; I wake again because the LORD sustains me. I will not be afraid of thousands of people who have taken their stand against me on every side.”
Fourth and finally, let the Lord know what you desire for Him to do. Of course, you submit every request to His will. But, don’t be afraid to let the Lord know what it is that you desire for Him to do.
Psalm 3:7-8 (CSB): “Rise up, LORD! Save me, my God! You strike all my enemies on the cheek; you break the teeth of the wicked. Salvation belongs to the LORD; may your blessing be on your people. Selah”
Friend, if you are struggling in your prayer life, or if you would simply like to take it up a notch, I would encourage you to reflectively read through the Psalms.
Look specifically for the psalms that are offered up as prayers. Observe what is said and learn how it can inform your own prayer life.
Prayer was never, ever intended to be a boring religious ritual. It can be a wonderful Christian discipline that allows our soul to commune with the God of all creation. Learn from the Psalms how to have that sort of enjoyable prayer time with God.
Excellent thoughts and teaching from Psalms, Bro Matt. I was blessed to be able to attend last Wednesday night. (I usually am struggling physically by afternoon /evening.) I remember attempting to teach, by example and words, our children that there is no set formula for prayer. All because of Jesus, our High Priest, we can boldly approach the throne of grace to find grace and strength to help us in our time of need. It is truly freeing moment when we understand that we can approach God just as we are. He knows how needful of Hin we truly are and is just waiting for us to realize and acknowledge that truth. Thanks for faithfully sharing with us.
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Wonderful comments! Thank you, Dewayne.