Tune in to the radio, the television, the Internet, mainstream sources, or alternative news… it’s not possible to come away from exposure to any of that without a sense that there’s a lot of bad news concerning our corrupt, confusing, and crumbling world. It can, if we let it, cause a sense of hopelessness or helplessness. This is not what our Heavenly Father wants us to have as a focus!
Certainly we need to be aware of what’s going on in the world, but what in the world is going on for heaven’s sake? This is what we need to get hold of. Might we consider taking a higher perspective, a “God’s eye view” of any and all situations?
Dear reader, here is what I have found to be helpful, and offer as a suggestion to you.
A Psalm such as Psalm 18, when prayed in its entirety, or by the use of a few verses – personalized, proclaimed and professed – can work wonders, lifting our hearts and spirits away from all the grim happenings and gloomy specters that haunt the very air we breathe. Singing the Psalms – if you’re so inclined – can be even more helpful.
The world may indeed be a very dark place, but when we can begin to speak or sing God’s truth into it, somehow affirming His grace, good, and glory begins to change the view and the reality. There is power in singing and proclaiming His praises and His truth! For while we are acknowledging Him in this way, in essence we have “gone higher” – into His Presence, which is always now, always here. We needed to be aware of it. To pray and to sing His truth can bring in this awareness.
This can be done in the silence of our inner praying, or the words can be spoken aloud. It’s easy to directly pray many of the Psalms. They can be contemplated, meditated upon, taken to heart, and offered up to the Lord as our own prayers. This one is suitable because it is written in the first person and we can take it to heart and make ot our own that way.
I love You, O Lord, my strength! … You are my fortress and my deliverer! … You are my God, my strength in whom I trust … You are my buckler … You are the horn of my salvation … You are my high tower! … I will call upon You … You are worthy to be praised … Because all of this is true, so shall I be saved from my enemies!
This is perhaps why some Christians have the practice of praying through all the psalms in their entirety once each week! They are potent prayer and praise songs revealing God’s will and how He works, which we need to acknowledge and to contemplate – prayers which so clearly reaffirm how deeply God loves His people, and invites them to call upon Him at all times and in all places.
To pray the psalms is to call out for the wisdom, strength, and almighty power of the Lord to be brought into our “situations” both personal and public, when things seem hopeless – because we need a Good Newsflash in a bad news world. Not just once, but continually.
Let’s also hold onto the related promise of Jesus Himself: “These things I have spoken unto you, that in me ye might have peace. In the world ye shall have tribulation: but be of good cheer; I have overcome the world.” (John 16:33)
Let His word always be the last word – in any situation, at all times, and in all places.