We returned very late last night from a family vacation to Southern California, so I’m in the midst of emptying suitcases, washing clothes and sorting beach toys. My word, how I wanted to stay – there were so many times I wanted to bottle the sea air and sounds and bring it back home with me.
For me, there aren’t many other places that reveal the power of God more than at the ocean. I took every opportunity I could, with or without kids, to get to the beach. One morning the tide was out so I got to take a run on sand that is normally covered in water. Seashells were everywhere and seagulls were busy looking for clams. The sounds, the expanse and enormity of the ocean is unmatched.
All during my run I kept hearing the Third Day song that is based on one of our chapters this week, Psalm 36:5-6
Your love, oh Lord reaches to the heavens
Your faithfulness stretches to the sky
Your righteousness is like the mighty mountains
Your justice flows like the ocean’s tide
The Psalms speak often of creation. A creation that has no choice but to point us to its very Maker.
The Lord merely spoke, and the heavens were created. He breathed the word and all the stars were born. He assigned the sea its boundaries and locked the oceans in vast reservoirs. Ps. 33:6-7 (NLT) The voice of the Lord echoes above the sea. The God of glory thunders. The Lord thunders over the mighty sea. Psalm 29:3 (NLT)
I stood in awe of Him this past week. I know you have done the same. I’m so thankful to be in His Word with you.
1. Key Themes
The Power of God. Psalm 29 dives right into this. He is all-powerful and all-mighty, and worthy of our complete reverence and awe.
Forgiveness. Soak in Psalm 32. This chapter shows us the amazing gift of forgiveness offered by our good God. What’s interesting is that David wrote this Psalm before Jesus lived on the earth. David did not have the Gospels. Jesus was not a part of history at that point, only a prophetic message. Yet David fully understood the need for forgiveness, for a covering. And in verses 3-5 he knowingly contrasts the weight of his sin with the beautiful freedom found in confession and submission to the Lord.
The Weight of Our Words. Last week we read Psalm 19:14, “Let the words of my mouth and the meditation of my heart be pleasing in Your sight.” This week we’ll read in chapter 34 “I will bless the Lord at all times, His praise shall continually be in my mouth.” That’s convicting just reading it! James says no one can tame the tongue. Because of this, I must daily (hourly?) offer my words and my thoughts to the Lord and ask Him to fill me. For an extra read on this topic, take a look at James 3:1-12. I so desperately need Him in this arena!
Complete Trust in Him. Psalm 37 is a direct testament to this. Verse 5 says, “Commit your way to the Lord, trust in Him, and He will do it.” This chapter deliberately describes God’s intentionality towards us. And then offers a timeline perspective in verse 25, when David chronicles that throughout his whole life, he has never seen the righteous forsaken. Our God is completely worthy of our trust.
2. Questions to Ponder As You Read
- What do these chapters speak to your heart about who God is?
- What is revealed about how He can be trusted with everything?
- How are you strengthened by these Psalms?
What are the “words of your mouth”? So often women are described as being catty or gossips. I do not think this is gender exclusive, but it certainly is not always false. What would it look like to become a woman who truly speaks with wisdom, love and praise of her Lord? After taking an honest look at your words, ask yourself these 2 questions:
- What attitudes or past hurts are impacting what you say to others? There’s usually a reason we say what we say. What might it be for you?
- Would you be willing to offer those areas of pain, thoughtlessness, or rebellion back to the Lord and ask Him to begin to change your heart? Luke 6:45 says that “out of the overflow of our heart, our mouth speaks”. When our heart is open to the Lord, He has the ability to mold our thoughts and our words and use it for His glory.
The Challenge this week comes out of our last chapter. Psalm 41:1 says “Blessed is he who considers the helpless.” Or as the NLT says “Oh, the joys of those who are kind to the poor.” Do you know someone who is poor, either physically or spiritually? A friend recently asked me, “So what are you doing to reach out to the poor in your life?” I love friends who challenge me and ask the big questions.
In our busy activity-filled summer plans, I’m challenging us to reach out and show the love of Jesus to one person, at least once a month during the three months of summer. Whether it’s a neighbor, a friend or a family member, all of us know someone who needs the compassion of the Savior. We can’t just keep all this God-good to ourselves. We are called to share it to a world in desperate need of His hope.
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Aren’t you encouraged when you hear about God moving in the lives of others, in women just like you? If you have a verse or a theme that has impacted your life, share it with us!