Scripture: Psalm 145
Key verses: (1-3) “I will extol thee, my God and King, and bless thy name for ever and ever. Every day I will bless thee, and praise thy name for ever and ever. Great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised, and his greatness is unsearchable.”
Reflection: Many scholars believe that today’s psalm may originally have been the final psalm in the Psalter. The psalms that follow (146-150) are drawn from its focus on praise. As one author has noted, it was the custom, in Jewish religious tradition to “repeat Psalm 145 as a way to confess the insufficiency of self and the sovereignty of God.” This psalm reminds us that God is sovereign and the ultimate source of our salvation. In the face of a world that is full of suffering and injustice, fear and confusion, God invites us to look to God as the source of our hope. This kind of hope was very important for the nation of Israel as they emerged from a brutal exile. It also has been very important to the Christian community over the centuries. St. Augustine, a well-known saint of the church, quotes Psalm 145 at the beginning of his Confessions. This is followed by his famous words: “You stimulate (us) to take pleasure in praising you, because you have made us for yourself, and our hearts are restless until they can find peace in you.” We are invited to live by “this great truth” and get to know God through praise.
You might not feel like praising God today. That’s OK. There may be some great challenge you are facing. God may feel a million miles away. Yet, there are still words of assurance and strength here that you can lean on. Read through the Psalm again and hear God’s word for you.
Prayer: Gracious God, we give you praise for your relentless love. You refuse to give up on us and constantly show us patience and mercy. Help us to sing your praises in the good times and in the bad. Show us how to put you at the center of our lives so that we might more fully live for you. In Jesus’ name we pray. Amen.
Author: Deborah Conner
[Scripture quotations are from New Revised Standard Version Bible, copyright © 1989 National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved].