Be Encouraged: Praying the Psalms (Part 1)


“Praise the Lord.  I will extol the Lord with all my heart
    in the council of the upright and in the assembly.”

~ Psalm 111:1

In his book “Exploring the Old Testament,” Ernest C. Lucas says that while all of the Words of Scripture speak to us, the Psalms speak for us.  They are prayers lifted up from all walks of life to our sovereign God.  I find myself enraptured in the Psalms frequently, and often times can relate to the praise or plight of the Psalmist.  Over the next few weeks, I want to spend time talking through how we can pray the Psalms back to the Lord.  In doing so, you will discover that it is refreshing and soul-nourishing to pray God’s Word back to Him while trusting fully that He, in His sovereignty, will listen and act according to His good will and purposes.

This week we’ll be looking at Psalm 111, a wisdom Psalm.  The Psalmist, while praising God for His faithful provision and majestic works, encourages the people of God with the precepts of God, reminding them of the security that is found in Him. 

When praying a Psalm, I will state the scripture back to God in the form of a prayer.  I would encourage you to read the whole Psalm for yourself.  Soak in its truth.  Below, you will find my prayer to the Lord based on the reading in Psalm 111.  You may read and pray my prayer with me or use my prayer below as a format to discover how to pray the Psalms for yourself.  Join me as I pray:

“Father, Son, and Holy Spirit I praise you today!  I will fervently praise you among your people, in the midst of your congregation, and wherever I am because You are worthy of praise and adoration (v1).  I praise You because of your awesome works, O God, even when I don’t understand, I stand in awe of your amazing deeds and your righteousness and goodness.  Thank you for the righteousness you give us in our Lord, Christ Jesus (v2-3).  I thank You Lord that, in your grace and mercy, you have made a way for those who fear you, provision for those who call you God and serve you in Word and deed.  Thank you, Lord that your promises never run dry.  We trust You, our God, to fulfill your promises to us in and through Jesus Christ (v4-5).

You have been so faithful, God.  You fulfilled your promise to Abraham and his descendants by providing a land for them.  Even today, you have given us a land where we can freely worship you without fear.  Father, I pray that you will allow your church to continue to worship you without fear of social or political persecution (v6).  We worship because you have redeemed us, and that redemption is secure in Christ Jesus.  We can trust that salvation cannot be taken from us, because your ways are true and good, and you are faithful forever and ever (v7-9).  Help us Lord to walk in your ways, to have a healthy understanding of your Word, and to fear you in reverence and awe, recounting all the great things you’ve done for your people.  I magnify you, my God, and will do so for all of my life and in every moment.  You are glorious (v10).  Amen!”

Be Encouraged <><

Pastor Chris

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Pastor Chris Ridler

Pastor Chris is married to his beautiful wife Becky and has a precious son named Noah. Chris received his Bachelor’s degree from Northwestern State University and is currently working on his Master’s of Divinity at Reformed Theological Seminary. Chris has served in full time ministry for over 13 years – as either a Youth Pastor, Worship Pastor or House Parent and is passionate about seeing people grow in their walk with Christ and disciple others for the glory of God’s kingdom.

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