I waited patiently for the Lord;
He turned to me and heard my cry.
He lifted me out of the slimy pit,
out of the mud and mire;
He set my feet on a rock
and gave me a firm place to stand.
He put a new song in my mouth,
a hymn of praise to our God.
– Psalm 40:1-3 [NIV]
I’ve never been one for new year resolutions. But I do believe in introspection and since my birthday falls on the first month of the year, I guess you could say I have life resolutions. Initially they used to be about what I wanted for myself in the new year of life I had. But gradually they’ve become about what God has in mind for me.
One of the things He placed in my heart at the start of this year was to read the Psalms. A Psalm a day as my meditation to feed my spirit.
Nothing could have prepared me for the journey that this has turned out to be.
There’s something about the raw vulnerability with which every psalmist presents themselves before God. Brutally honest confessions of their despair followed by defiantly hopeful declarations that God was and is able to make it all better.
They didn’t praise just because they were in the mood and life was dandy. They sang of disappointment but their song didn’t end there because they stood on the hope that their story wasn’t over. God wasn’t done yet. He had barely begun so how could they not sing?
“Sometimes you gotta tell your soul to sing
Even when you don’t feel a thing.
You gotta sing louder.”
– Steffany Gretzinger
They praised themselves into the manifest presence of God. Even when everything was a mess and all seemed lost. They exalted the name of God above all else. Every word uttered in faith, speaking of things they had yet to see, took them a step deeper into the reality of the goodness of God.
I have marvelled at the audacity of their faith. I’ve moved over lines with my heart in my mouth as I whispered the very same words over my life.
“My heart, O God, is steadfast; I will sing and make music with all my soul. Awake, harp and lyre! I will awaken the dawn.”
– Psalm 108: 1-2 [NIV]
I am learning to sing the song that awakens the dawn.
The song that bursts forth because I know the light of dawn is coming not because I’ve seen it already.
The song bravely…defiantly…sung in darkness that calls forth the light.
Those roosters that crow way too early in the morning even before the sun shows up? Those birds that start chirping even before the cover of darkness lifts? They’re actually onto something. Who knew?