top of page

Journey Through The Psalms: Shaping New Life

I will extol the Lord at all times; his praise will always be on my lips. I will glory in the Lord; let the afflicted hear and rejoice. Glorify the Lord with me; let us exalt his name together. I sought the Lord, and he answered me; he delivered me from all my fears. Those who look to him are radiant; their faces are never covered with shame. This poor man called, and the Lord heard him; he saved him out of all his troubles. The angel of the Lord encamps around those who fear him, and he delivers them. Taste and see that the Lord is good; blessed is the one who takes refuge in him. Fear the Lord, you his holy people, for those who fear him lack nothing. The lions may grow weak and hungry, but those who seek the Lord lack no good thing. Come, my children, listen to me; I will teach you the fear of the Lord. Whoever of you loves life and desires to see many good days, keep your tongue from evil and your lips from telling lies. Turn from evil and do good; seek peace and pursue it. The eyes of the Lord are on the righteous, and his ears are attentive to their cry; but the face of the Lord is against those who do evil, to blot out their name from the earth. The righteous cry out, and the Lord hears them; he delivers them from all their troubles. The Lord is close to the brokenhearted and saves those who are crushed in spirit. The righteous person may have many troubles, but the Lord delivers him from them all; he protects all his bones, not one of them will be broken. Evil will slay the wicked; the foes of the righteous will be condemned. The Lord will rescue his servants; no one who takes refuge in him will be condemned. Psalm 34

It is good to see more of you beginning to return. And it's good to have hit rock bottom last week with Psalm 88. Here we have a little more enthusiasm and joy in the Psalm this morning as we hear the praise that is echoed in those words, and it is a day of praise for us as well. I don't know if many of you have paid attention to the calendar. But it was one year ago, this Sunday or today, that we began having to alter everything about life. Not just church, not just worship, but how all of you have done things through this time of shopping, going to the store, getting to doctor's appointments, and all of those things that we do and took for granted before. And so it is with praise that we come together today.

I think this Psalm is one that helps us to recognize the goodness of God through all that we've been through. This Psalm has the subtitle under it of praise for deliverance from trouble. And I think that we definitely owe God some praise for having been with us through this past year, because it hasn't been easy. It's been challenging. We have seats in the pews that will no longer be occupied by the people that were in them a year ago. because we've said goodbye to some loved ones. And so it's challenging, and yet we find that in the midst of challenges, there are opportunities for praise.

This Psalm points us to some of those things and shows us a little bit of what new life can look like, emerging from difficulties and challenges. I think verse 12 of this Psalm is really in my mind kind of the question that is being addressed in here. Because in verse 12, it says, “Which of you or who among you desires life and covets many days to enjoy good?” Who of you wants life? Well, I think the answer is probably all of us. As relevant as that question would have been for the audience of this Psalmist, it's still as relevant today as ever. Who of you desires life? Well we all do. And what's more after the year that we've had, we desire a life that is free from restrictions, free from worry and anxiety concern, a life that feels and looks a little more familiar to what we knew prior to all of this.

So the Psalmist says, “Who of you desires life?” And then the Psalmist begins to give us an example, a witness, a testimony about his experience. You see, this Psalm is a Psalm of David, as the subscription at the top would say. And it explains a little bit about the situation. It says of David when he fiend madness before Abimelech so that he drove him out and he went away. Now, there's a reference in 1 Samuel Chapter 20 to David g