‘I sought the Lord and He answered me…’ (Psalm 34:4)
Read Psalm 34
The Apostle Paul said that we should not boast in anything but the Lord and in a sense that is what much of this Psalm is all about. For us perhaps the most notable verse, or the one we are most familiar with, is verse eight, ‘Taste and see that the Lord is good…’ because this is one often used as we celebrate Holy Communion. But if we look at the Psalm in its entirety we find that it is essentially a combination of worship and witness. Indeed Charles Spurgeon once said of this Psalm that the first ten verses were like a hymn and the remaining twelve like a sermon – and so we see that as we look at the verses closely.
For us as Christians there are so many things that we take from this Psalm and it might in fact be possible for all of us in both churches to take something different from it such is the ‘richness’ of this Psalm. Yet there are probably one or two things that we might all learn from it, irrespective of however this Psalm ‘speaks’ to us.
The first is the personal, intimate nature of the experience of the Psalmist. The beauty of the Psalm depicts a personal relationship between the Lord and the individual and we have this wonderful image of a God who genuinely cares for the well-being of that individual. Then we have the faith of the Psalmist, that genuine belief he has that when he calls on God, the Lord will answer – based on more personal experience of God in the past. And all of this leads the Psalmist, not only to rejoice, but to encourage others to do likewise, to seek the Lord and know that outpouring of love only He can give.
However, the Psalm also reminds us that none of the above exempts a believer from times of trouble. Trials and tribulation will come our way and we may become broken-hearted and crushed in spirit. But if we hold fast to the Lord through those times of testing, He will be with us every step of the way and help us through whatever we face and again the Apostle Paul would echo this sentiment, ‘ We are hard pressed on every side, but not crushed…’(2 Cor. 4:8)
However this Psalm may resonate with us personally, ultimately Psalm 32 is about answered prayer, about bearing witness to and giving thanks and praise for that and exhorting others to seek the Lord in the same manner – in many ways a snapshot of what our Christian lives should be all about!
Lord, we do indeed praise You for all Your goodness and blessings and for all that You do for us each and every day. Help us to be truly thankful and to bear witness to these blessings in our own lives of faith, that in so doing others too, in the words of the Psalmist, may come to seek the Lord. Amen
Question Of The Day: Who advised Moses who select elders to help him settle disputes?