Today's Lectionary Text
Praise the Lord!
Do not put your trust in princes,
Happy are those whose help is the God of Jacob,
The Lord sets the prisoners free;
The Lord will reign forever,
For over a year, I use to meet four other coworkers at Panera every Wednesday in the morning before work. We would take turns reading either a Proverb or a Psalm (The Psalms and Proverbs really took on a new meaning reading them out-loud in a busy restaurant). We had no rhyme or reason, but it really was up to whoever was going to start reading out loud that day. Over time, very simplistically, the four of us figured out that question was usually are you needing praise or wisdom? That dictated what we would read. Obviously, we need both, but as I read this Psalm 146 I felt the wisdom that I needed if even during my time of needing help.
In the NRSV Bible I referenced to read Psalm 146, the Bible headlines the Psalm as “Praise for God’s Help”. That initially caught me off-guard because I know for a fact that when I am needing God’s help, it is not praise-worthy. I tend to be quick to jump to my requests and then usually in my prayer God humbles me and I recognize His mercy and grace. I was challenged to not only focus on who God is and praise Him but also how do I get this out of order? The author of the Psalm has it right! The praises to God are life-long praises to the Lord. I could not help but think the praises are songs that carry throughout all of eternity.
As you read through the Psalm, about halfway through notice the sense of confidence and reassurance what “The Lord” does through the work of the Holy Spirit. While the qualities of God, which are endless, are primarily my focus, in this Psalm 146 the freedom, lifting-up, love and watching all the Lord does is just the help I could ever need.
Coordinator of Lay Leadership
Prayer for Reflection
Loving heavenly Father, how wonderful are the works of Your hands and How majestic are Your ways. How amazing is Your grace towards me and how deep is Your love for those of us who know you. Thank You that I am Your child and the work of Your hands. May I raise my heart and voice day my day, to sing of Your love and faithfulness to me in Christ Jesus, my Lord, AMEN.
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