Bible Verse: “I waited patiently for the Lord… He put a new song in my mouth, a song of praise to our God. Many will see and fear, and put their trust in the Lord. Blessed is the man who makes the Lord his trust.” (Psalm 40:1, 3-4)
Scripture Reading: Psalm 40:1-17
Ever hear a song and then find yourself singing it over and over again? One Friday afternoon I was driving home from work and the guy on the radio introduced a tune, saying this one was sure to get into our heads and play itself over and over again all weekend. He was right. Three days later I was still singing the 80’s smash hit by Split Enz over and over and over. “I got you, that’s all I want …” If you know the tune, you’re welcome!
Do you know what I want to be repeating in my head over and over? I want to be repeating words that are true and reliable and pure, courageous, loving and kind. I want my mind and heart to be occupied with humility and faith and trust – and their expressions courage and love and service to others.
As I read Psalm 40 (and other Psalms), there are phrases that get into my mind and stick. If I let myself pay good attention, repeating a phrase over and over, the words layer onto my psyche, and plant themselves into my soul. And then I find many of them pop up again days or months later, right when I need them.
“I waited patiently for the Lord, He inclined and heard my cry.” (This is also the opening line of a song by another band from the 80’s. But I digress.) “I waited patiently … He heard my cry.” When I let these words reverberate repeatedly in my mind they transform my life over time.
How does this work? Well, the Psalms are songs, and those who wrote them and those who learned them sang them. In the original language the words were singable, and so they were sung over and over again. And so today there is something unique and powerful that happens in me as I let the words of the Psalms “sing themselves into me.”
“I’m waiting patiently for you God. I know that you listen, and I know you will pull me up out of whatever tries to yank at my feet. I know you have and you will ‘set my feet upon a rock, making my steps secure,’ and I will again have good reason to sing a new song. As you do this, I believe that many will see what you have done in my life and they also will trust in you.”
Could this song, and will this song get into you today? “I got you, and that’s all I want,” because “You are my helper and my saviour. O my God, do not delay.” (v. 17, NLT)
— Tim Doherty, pastoral team, Beulah Alliance Church, Edmonton, AB.
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