June 11, 2024

Several years ago, my Dad encouraged me to begin a habit that has stuck with me. He pointed out that there are 150 Psalms and 31 Proverbs in the Bible. He encouraged me to read 5 Psalms and 1 Proverb each day, and in one month’s time, I’d read completely through both books.

Why the Psalms and Proverbs? The book of Proverbs contains instructions for living a life of good character. It clearly points out the character qualities that are desirable for living a rich, full life: honesty, perseverance, faithfulness, dependability, thriftiness, and many more. Inside this book, we also find instructions for maintaining positive attitudes and building strong relationships. One of my favorite passages is, “Trust in the Lord with all of your heart, and lean not on your own understanding. In all your ways, acknowledge Him, and He will direct your paths.” (Proverbs 3:5,6)

The Psalms help us express emotions. Inside these 150 books, we find expressions of loneliness, sadness, grief, joy, anger, worship and adoration, regret, discouragement and turmoil. Have you ever had so much stress in your life that you’ve been unable to pray? Perhaps, like me, you’ve had times when you couldn’t hear God’s voice, or you really didn’t know what to say to Him. Reading the Psalms aloud can be therapeutic. I’ve found that the ability to state these emotions through the written Word has helped me find my way through problems, it’s lightened the dark days, and enabled me to regain joy in life!

Meditate on these powerful and comforting words from Psalm 91:

He who dwells in the shelter of the Most High,
who abides in the shadow of the Almighty,
will say to the Lord, “My refuge and my fortress;
my God, in whom I trust.”
For he will deliver you from the snare of the fowler
and from the deadly pestilence;
he will cover you with his pinions,
and under his wings you will find refuge;
his faithfulness is a shield and buckler.
You will not fear the terror of the night,
nor the arrow that flies by day,
nor the pestilence that stalks in darkness,
nor the destruction that wastes at noonday.
A thousand may fall at your side,
ten thousand at your right hand;
but it will not come near you.

I don’t know about you, but I find great comfort in those words. God IS my refuge and strength, and in Him I do trust.

The words of the Psalms and the guiding light of the Proverbs have been a blessing to me in countless ways. I am grateful for my dad’s wisdom and even more, the wisdom of God’s word to us found in the wonderful books of the Bible.

Susan Meharg, Executive Assistant to the Senior Pastor