Whether you are in a season of blessing or a season where you feel beaten up and crushed, the Psalms have something for you. The book of Psalms is a collection of men pouring out God-besotted truth before the face of the Lord. The result of their prayers and pleas to the Lord was not to pick themselves up off the ground or to beat themselves into submission. Instead, the result was their hearts and minds turning in praise to the Lord who alone is the rock and refuge of their souls.
Over the past decade, one thing has remained relatively constant in my Christian life: my love for the Psalms. At various times in the Psalms, the author is crying out to the Lord (Psalm 18:6) and pouring out the mess of his heart and life to Him. Then, he turns around and praises the Lord (Psalm 59:16). The Psalmist also calls out to the Lord who is His rock of refuge (Psalm 18:2) and his help in time of need (Psalm 46:1).
The Psalms are full of heavy theology. From Psalm 2 declaring the exaltation of the Lord to the Psalmists expressing the depths of God’s character, virtues, and attributes (Psalm 103,117, 145), the Psalms are first and foremost theological. The book of Psalms shows us not only how to do to right theology, but also how good theology should lead us to have sound worship and right living before the face of the Lord.
Pivotal Moments in My Walk with God as a Teenager
In my teenage years, there were some crucial moments during which my life could have gone a very different direction very quickly. One was when I was a sophomore in high school and my parents got divorced. While I knew this was coming, it still wasn’t easy. The book of Psalms during this period of my life stabilized my heart, mind, and soul on the Lord. In addition to lots of people in my local church surrounding me in Christian love, taking the truth of Psalms and preaching it to myself helped me immensely in this season of my life.
Preaching the Psalms to Yourself
Preaching to yourself means taking the truth of any book of Scripture and applying it to your heart and life. It also means taking what the Scripture says about God, His person, character, and all that He is and preaching it to ourselves. We do not preach the Word to ourselves willy-nilly. When we talk about preaching the Psalms to ourselves, we are talking about using proper biblical interpretation.
Preaching the Psalms to ourselves is soul-stirring and soul-satisfying. In the Psalms, the biblical writers tell God things like, “Like a deer pants for the Lord so my soul pants for you” (Psalm 42:1). Also, the Psalmist is often downcast and then, in a few short verses, turns around and acknowledges the greatness of God and praises Him (Psalm 42:5, 42:11, 43:5).