I’m reading a book entitled Answering God by Eugene Peterson (HarperCollins, 1989). The author describes the Psalms as tools for
cultivating and sharpening one’s prayer focus.
Peterson does not set out to write a commentary on the Psalms. Instead, he sets out to provide an owner’s
manual for the Psalms. The Psalms are
not easy, and prayers are not easy, but the Psalms are prayers that teach us
how to pray. Our understanding does not
come before we pray; rather, our understanding comes as we use the Psalms to
begin relating to God.
The first two Psalms (1&2) introduce us to prayer in the
way of the Psalms. Psalm 1 describes
prayer like a tree. In essence, it says
go look at a tree and you will begin to understand what meditation looks
like. Psalm 2 seeks to gift us with a
God-sized imagination. While the
powerful rulers of the world strive, God simply laughs. He is far more powerful than the most
powerful leader the world has to offer… and He is worthy of worship. The first Psalm teaches us about meditation,
the second Psalm teaches about the wonder and grandeur of God. Then the third Psalm is the first genuine prayer
found in the book of Psalms. It is an
honest description of fear and anger and emotion shaped into a prayer.
I’ve heard someone say prayer is a means God uses to give us
what He wants. I believe this. In the final analysis, God wants to give us
Himself. He knows that he is the key to
our joy and fulfillment and happiness.
Prayer serves the ends of God’s glory and our joy. It is time to pray. Our elders have decided to use Wednesday
lunch hour to pray for our church and our upcoming “Stronger” marriage
conference. We are giving up a meal a
week to relate to God and tell him we are interested in what he can do in
marriages in our community. Will you
join us for the next 6 Wednesdays to pray?