April 24

Psalms 69, 86, 131, I Samuel 28:3-25

We can learn so much from reading David’s psalms about how to face difficult times. He could pour out his heart to God with such detail I can almost feel his pain. Sometimes when I read him I wonder how he could know me so well and put into words what I am feeling myself.

But in each of these psalms David doesn’t dwell on his problems. After he lays it all out there he changes his focus from looking inward to looking upward. I imagine David writing these verses of praise and not really feeling all that positive. But he chose praise over self-pity. He forced himself to look away from the problems and into the face of the problem-solver.

Once again I am reminded that God inhabits praise. If I am feeling he’s not near I need to sing his praises. He is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love and faithfulness. He is great and does marvelous deeds. He loves me with a great love.

Years ago the Imperials, a Christian quartet sang a song that has just come to mind. I hope they will forgive me for using this without their permission but if I remember correctly the words go:

Praise the Lord.

He can work through those who praise him.

Praise the Lord

For our God inhabits praise.

Praise the Lord

For the chains that seem to bind us

Serve only to remind us

That they drop powerless behind us

When we praise the Lord.

Father in Heaven, I praise you today. I give you my heart aches and troubles and know you are all I need. May my focus be on you today and may I have a thankful heart for all the blessings you have showered on me.

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