Our Sabbath celebrations recently included the sermon series “Drawing Closer To God: 21 Days Of Fasting And (Fervent) Prayer.” We are fervent fasters (note 1). But our prayer life is a work in process. Thank you God.
One of the messages in the series included an explication of Psalm 63, David’s song to God from the Desert of Judah while he was on the run from enemies who wanted him dead. David sings of his longing for God, the majesty of God, and his faith and confidence in God. It’s widely believed that this Psalm was read or sung daily as worship to the Lord, possibly by decree of King David.
We loved King David’s decree so much that we committed to reading Psalm 63 out loud each day last week at the beginning of our time with God. The experience was so enriching that we are adopting the daily out-loud Psalm reading as a tradition in our house (adding it to a series of other traditions including Friday date night, full celebration of Advent and Hanukkah, and others (see related posts)). This week it will be Psalm 104.
We decided our daily reading would be from a different Bible translation each day. Here is Psalm 63 from the International Children’s Bible (ICB):
Wishing to Be Near God
A song of David when he was in the desert of Judah.
God, you are my God.
I want to follow you.
My whole being
thirsts for you,
like a man in a dry, empty land
where there is no water.
I have seen you in the temple.
I have seen your strength and glory.
Your love is better than life.
I will praise you.
I will praise you as long as I live.
I will lift up my hands in prayer to your name.
I will be content as if I had eaten the best foods.
My lips will sing. My mouth will praise you.
I remember you while I’m lying in bed.
I think about you through the night.
You are my help.
Because of your protection, I sing.
I stay close to you.
You support me with your right hand.
Some people are trying to kill me.”
But they will go down to the grave.
They will be killed with swords.
They will be eaten by wild dogs.
But the king will rejoice in his God.
All who make promises in his name will praise him.
But the mouths of liars will be shut.
We urge you to make this a tradition in your family. Watch. God will surely bless you. Praying by speaking God’s Word back to him is a beautiful thing. And He loves it. Among other things, it honors Him by confirming that you believe it. And that you know His Word will never return void.
- If you would like our summary on fasting (Daniel, etc.), email us at firstname.lastname@example.org