A Psalm of God's Faithfulness
“One generation shall commend Your works to another,
and shall declare Your mighty acts.
On the glorious splendor of Your majesty,
and on your wondrous works, I will meditate.”
I’m studying the book of Psalms with the women at The Village Church in Dallas. Because the women’s Bible study is online, I’ve been able to join as a “non-local” participant and it has been so good.
Not only am I soaking in the beauty of the Psalms and learning truths about God’s character, I’m also learning HOW to read the Psalms. I’m learning how to identify the different genres of the Psalms and study the historical background that gives each Psalm context. Possibly the best part is that I’m learning elements of Hebrew poetry that are unlocking the whole book for me. I’m learning how to recognize the author’s intent and see the tools the author used to convey meaning to the original audience. I’m learning how to understand them as corporate prayers and songs for the nation of Israel.
In studying the genre of historical psalms, I am amazed at the way the Israelites used repetition and storytelling to remember who they were - and WHOSE they were. I am fascinated by the ways that the different authors had compiled the history of God’s faithfulness through the Exodus, plagues, manna, and fulfillment of prophesy for the purpose of passing on those truths to the next generation.
The Jewish audience was so steeped in the stories of their people. The author of the Psalms needed only to hint at a specific example of God’s faithfulness and the hearer’s mind would fill in all the gaps to complete the story.
For example, in Psalm 105:37, we sing that Israel was brought out of Egypt with silver and gold. The original audience would have understood the enormous implications of that statement. Any mention of manna, plagues, or covenant would have brought a million images and stories to mind. The Psalms are deeply personal, emotional, and meaningful.
In many places in the Psalms, there is an instruction to teach these truths to the next generation. Psalm 78 tells the history of the nation of Israel from captivity in Egypt to King David. It is a warning to not forget. It is an instruction to teach these truths about our faithful King so that the next generation doesn’t forget. And that, in remembering, they would obey.
“We will not hide them from their children
but tell to the coming generation
The glorious deeds of the LORD, and his might
and the wonders that He has done.”
So, I wrote my own psalm.
A psalm of God’s faithfulness. A psalm that I will add to throughout my life and will explain to my own precious next generation. It is deeply personal, emotional, and meaningful.
I have endeavored to put into practice some of the elements I have learned from studying the original Hebrew structures. Each reference in each line means so much more to me than the words on the page.
Many of you, my friends, know the things that I’ve alluded to. You walked through them with me. I know that I have a lifetime of learning about our God yet ahead of me. I have only scratched the surface of knowing who He is and how He works in my life. What a joy to learn!
So, I want to invite you into my heart to see the things I’ve learned about God. I’ve begun with a few verses from Psalm 105.
Tell of All His Wondrous Works
Oh give thanks to the Lord; call upon His name;
make known His deeds among the peoples!
Sing to Him, sing praises to Him;
tell of all His wondrous works!
Glory in His holy name;
let the hearts of those who seek the Lord rejoice!
Seek the Lord and his strength;
seek His presence continually!
Remember His wondrous works that He has done,
his miracles, and the judgements he uttered,
O offspring of Abraham, his servant,
children of Jacob, his chosen ones!
God, in His goodness, prepared families
to teach us from the beginning
to model a Christlike life to us when we were young.
God, in His love, drew us to Himself.
He opened our eyes.
He gave us a desire for Himself.
God, in His patience, counseled us
through His Spirit
through our growing-up years.
God, in His holiness, protected us from so much.
He showed us the many ways
we didn’t measure up.
God, in His compassion, sent Christ
when we could do nothing
to earn salvation.
God, our deliverer, saved us
when we could do nothing
to save ourselves.
God, in His sovereignty, allowed us to walk through
the darkness and the pain
of multiple miscarriages.
God, in His faithfulness, never left us alone.
The darkness revealed beautiful truths about His character;
Beautiful things I would not have known otherwise.
God, in His omniscience, made it clear that
what He wanted for us was different than where we were
sitting, living, serving, and learning.
God, in His sufficiency, made it clear that
His plans for us bring immeasurable joy.
Our plans for ourselves pale in comparison.
God, our generous provider, paved the way for us to join Wycliffe.
He provided a buyer for our house,
a camper to live in, and a plan for training.
God, our Jehovah-Jireh, provided
a team of partners to pray and give financially
so that all of our needs are met.
God, in His love, has carried our family
through transition after transition.
He has knit our family together beautifully.
God, our refuge, promises
always to be with us
in France and in Africa.
God, in His faithfulness, will continue
to prepare, provide, counsel,
to encourage, carry, protect.
God, in His infinite wisdom and mercy, will work
through us, in spite of us
for His glory.
Praise the LORD!