March 24 Devotional

Today we’ll look at another Psalm, Psalm 42:
As a deer pants for flowing streams,
    so pants my soul for you, O God.
My soul thirsts for God,
    for the living God.
When shall I come and appear before God?
My tears have been my food
    day and night,
while they say to me all the day long,
    “Where is your God?”
These things I remember,
    as I pour out my soul:
how I would go with the throng
    and lead them in procession to the house of God
with glad shouts and songs of praise,
    a multitude keeping festival.
Why are you cast down, O my soul,
    and why are you in turmoil within me?
Hope in God; for I shall again praise him,
    my salvation and my God.
My soul is cast down within me;
    therefore I remember you
from the land of Jordan and of Hermon,
    from Mount Mizar.
Deep calls to deep
    at the roar of your waterfalls;
all your breakers and your waves
    have gone over me.
By day the Lord commands his steadfast love,
    and at night his song is with me,
    a prayer to the God of my life.
I say to God, my rock:
    “Why have you forgotten me?
Why do I go mourning
    because of the oppression of the enemy?”
As with a deadly wound in my bones,
    my adversaries taunt me,
while they say to me all the day long,
    “Where is your God?”
Why are you cast down, O my soul,
    and why are you in turmoil within me?
Hope in God; for I shall again praise him,
    my salvation and my God.
The primary question that should jump out to you as you read this Psalm is: what are you longing for? As the days are continuing on, and as the shelter in place orders continue to spread, I find myself increasingly drawn to want to be out there doing something. There’s something weird in the American psyche that has a knee jerk reaction to disobey whatever we’re told to do 🙂 And I confess that I find myself drawn to the same thing! 
 
Notice as well, what is it that the writer is missing? Meeting together as God’s people to focus exclusively on Him! I find myself missing the same things right now! I miss being able to get coffee together, to sit down and chat as we practice music together, to meet for lunch, all the things that make up being a part of the body of Christ. There should be a sense of longing in the midst of this season where we can’t meet. Yes, Zoom, Skype, FaceTime, Google Hangouts can do in a pinch, but they’re a poor substitute for actually meeting together. 
 
Lastly, notice how the write speaks to himself, or as I’ve heard others say, he preaches to himself. He says “Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me?” I would imagine that (like me!) many of you are feeling that way right now too. My retirement portfolio is not looking too hot, I can’t go in to work, my kids are going stir crazy already, and we’re probably going to be confined to our houses by the end of the week, if things continue to progress as they have been. Yet in the midst of the questioning, we can also urge ourselves on, as the writer goes on to say “Hope in God; for I shall again praise him, my salvation and my God.” Even in the midst of what’s going on around us, we are commanded to hope. Hope is the byproduct of the Christian life, where we can put our full confidence in God, because He has proven Himself faithful over and over and over again. So today, put your hope in God, because he cares for you. (1 Peter 5:7).
The song to listen to today is called ‘Lord from Sorrows Deep I Call (Psalm 42)’ by the Gettys which you can listen to on YOUTUBE or SPOTIFY.
BONUS SONG: Sandra McCracken also has an arraignment based on this Psalm called ‘My Help, My God’ which is fun to listen to and compare the two versions and what they emphasize. You can listen to this one on YOUTUBE or SPOTIFY as well!
Don’t forget, if you want to listen to the ongoing playlist in it’s entirety, you can listen to it on SPOTIFY.
 
FREE STUFF:
If you’ve got kids, Adventure in Odyssey is offering a FREE 4 week trial to listen to every episode they’ve ever created. When I was growing up I measure road trips by how many episodes we could get through, so they are VERY good! You can sign up HERE.
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