Tuesday mornings…psalm of hope

The Psalms have become a refuge in the milieu of mounting prayer needs and a sense of woe. I am reminded that it is not our circumstances that will sustain joy, as circumstances change. Nor can we manipulate them entirely to our satisfaction. I’m not suggesting one just give up; but hope, sustaining, abiding hope, needs to come from a  place stronger and deeper than that. The one who can manipulate our circumstances is God…and He has done so.

Psalm 32:

“Blessed is he whose transgressions are forgiven, whose sins are covered. Blessed is the man whose sin the Lord does not count against him and in whose spirit is no deceit.

When I kept silent my bones wasted away through my groaning all day long. For day and night your hand was heavy upon me; my strength was sapped as in the heat of summer.

Then I acknowledged my sin to you and did not cover up my iniquity. I said, ‘I will confess my transgressions to the Lord’ – and you forgave the guilt of my sin.

Therefore let everyone who is Godly pray to you while you may be found; surely when the mighty waters rise, they will not reach him. You are my hiding place; you will protect me from trouble and surround me with songs of deliverance.

I will instruct you and teach you in the way you should go; I will counsel you and watch over you. Do not be like the horse or the mule, which have no understanding but must be controlled by bit and bridle or they will not come to you.

Many are the woes of the wicked, but the Lord’s unfailing love surrounds the man who trusts in him.

Rejoice in the Lord and be glad, you righteous; sing, all you who are upright in heart!” (1)

At first draft, I made a glaring typo: I will confess my transgression… singular, rather than plural. Often, I try to continue through my day, throwing off( read ignoring) my missteps and failures, only to be weighted deeper by their depressing company. Having trusted God for a long time, it is not so often glaring, overt sins that shape my struggle, nor even my tongue in public. It is subtle mutterings, attitudes of my heart, and distorted justifications of my mind. These things get in the way of any real kingdom work, effective prayers. As I finish reading this psalm, it makes me want to sing….Jesus is the answer for my trouble, my internal behavioral problems. Hallelujah! There is a Savior. He is so much better company, than my own broken thoughts. Praise his Holy name.

Jesus, today we beg your forgiveness, knowing that you welcome our sorry confession, our company. Will you brighten my countenance by your company, that I might offer YOUR hope to the world. Amen.

Psalm 32 Zondervan Study Bible NIV. Grand Rapids 1984