Tuesday, May 17, 2016

The Perfect Psalm for Today

If you have read any of my blogs this year, then you know I have been slowly going through the Psalms. Occasionally, I get frustrated with myself because I’m going so slowly. It seems that I am getting behind on some artificial, self-imposed mandate to march through one psalm per day. But then I read the psalm for today, and I realize the timing is perfect. I am not behind. I am right on schedule.

You may or may not know that my sister, Angela, has Duchenne Muscular Dystrophy. That is her in the photo with my daughter, Sabrina. Angela has been confined to a wheelchair for the past thirty-plus years. She has had a tracheostomy and been on a ventilator so she can breathe for maybe the past ten to fifteen years. She has been in and out of the hospital with pneumonia too many times to count. Each time feels like it might be the last. When she was diagnosed with MD in the 1970’s, the prognosis was that she would only make it to her late teens or early twenties, and she is now 46.

She is currently in the hospital again. This time with double pneumonia and a collapsed lung. As you can imagine, she is experiencing a great deal of fear and anxiety. Not fear of dying, but fear of the feeling of suffocation and pain. I would be too.

This morning, my first thought was that I might skip today’s psalm in order to read and pray over some other passage on healing or peace. But then I decided to go ahead and read the psalm for today anyway. Yesterday, I was on Psalm 55, so 56 was up for today. And it is perfect for today.

Would you join me in praying for Angela. Pray for a sense of peace and calm that can only come from God. Let’s pray these words from Psalm 56 together for her…

“When I am afraid, I will put my trust in you.
I praise God for what he has promised.
I trust in God, so why should I be afraid? ….
You keep track of all my sorrows.
You have collected all my tears in your bottle.
You have recorded each one in your book. …
This I know: God is on my side!
I praise God for what he has promised;
Yes, I praise the Lord for what he has promised.
I trust in God, so why should I be afraid? …
For you have rescued me from death;
You have kept my feet from slipping.
So now I can walk in your presence, O God,
In your life-giving light.” (Ps 56:3-4, 8, 9b-11a, 13 NLT)

Thursday, May 5, 2016

Sing Praises!

I wrote quite a few songs during the time I served in worship ministry in Texas, but I haven't written any since we left. I have been slowly going through the psalms every day, and I spent these past few days I reading Psalm 47. I found a song there.

As poetry that was originally written in Hebrew, the psalms don't usually hold such rhythm in English as I found in verses 6-7 --"Sing praises to God, sing praises; sing praises to our King, sing praises. For God is the King of all the earth; sing to him a psalm of praise" (NIV).

I have certainly read these verses before, but this time they formed rhythm and melody in my head as I read them. What I "heard" was this song that is an invitation for all people to join in singing songs of praise to God.

This blog entry is really a song --- listen to the link below and join me in following the instructions given us in Psalm 47 and sing a song of praise to our God and King!

Sing Praises! (Psalm 47)

Sing praises to our God, sing praise!
Sing praises to our King, sing praise!
For our God is the King over all the earth
Oh, sing to Him a song of praise!

Verse 1:
Clap your hands, all you people
And shout to God with a joyous cry
Lift Him up, for He is worthy
How awesome is the Lord Most High
(Repeat Chorus)

Verse 2:
Our God reigns over every nation
He's seated on His holy throne
Every knee will bow before Him
The earth belongs to Him alone
(Repeat Chorus)

Lord, You are good; You are holy
You are righteous; You are just
You are mighty and full of mercy
You are worthy of all our praise
(Repeat Chorus)

(c) 2016 Sheri Tesar