Be Encouraged: Praying the Psalms (Part 4)

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“Surely goodness and mercy shall follow me all the days of my life,

and I shall dwell in the house of the Lord forever.”

~ Psalm 23:6

Reading and praying the Psalms can be one of the most rewarding experiences in the life of a believer.  Like the rest of the scriptures, it is written to us and for us.  However, the Psalms are uniquely written to cover all areas of life for the believer exhaustively.  Better yet, they all point us to forward to Christ who, in His humanity, has experienced everything we have and overcame.  The hope is that by reading and praying the Psalms, we can find hope in the midst of our circumstances and honor Jesus.

Today, we are praying Psalm 23; a psalm of confidence.  This is one of the most well known psalms (and passages) in all of the Bible.  A psalm of confidence helps us to rest secure on God who is our rock.  We pray confidently knowing that He will provide our every need.  That means we find assurance, comfort, hope, and security when we pray these psalms.

*As a reminder (I’ll say this every week), 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, then pray it back to the Lord.  Below, you will find my prayer to the Lord based on the reading in Psalm 23.  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, thank You for your Word.  It constantly challenges me and reminds me to remember how amazing You are, how you comfort me, how you have and will provide for me, and how you care for me.  Help me to be confident in your faithfulness to me, and let me stand on your Word secure knowing that Your promises, especially those in this Psalm, are yes and amen in Christ Jesus (2 Cor. 1:20). 

Lord, You are my shepherd.  Thank you that as my shepherd, you provide for my physical and spiritual well-being. (v.1) 

As a part of your chosen flock, You lead me into green pastures where I find sustenance and security.  You lead me beside still waters where I am satisfied without fear.  Thank you for the provision you give to me. (v.2)

You are the restorer of my soul, and the only one who can hold me fast.  Fear, anxiety, and uncertainty of our current political and social climate wear away at me like an erosive wind, but in you I find restoration, peace, and my fears are quelled.  And you do it all so that I may walk in your ways, for your glory and for my good.  I am in awe of you, my God! (v.3)

Lord, our current situation is dire.  Corona virus infections are on the rise.  Lord we pray for those who may acquire this virus, that you would protect them from harm.  We pray that our governing authorities will make wise decisions regarding our economy and our health; decisions that both honor and glorify You.  In addition to this, a virus has overtaken our land worse than Coronavirus.  A virus of unrest, disunity, and civil disobedience mark our land, and we live in a day where abiding in, believing, and obeying Your Word as absolute truth is met with political and social persecution.  Lord I pray that as Your church walks in this current darkness, we will have no fear.  We trust that you, our God, will discipline us with your rod, and that you will protect us with your staff.  I pray that I will receive your discipline as you sanctify me, and that I trust in your eternal protection to as I proclaim the Gospel with my life. (v.4)

Yet, in the midst of these times you love us, Your church.  For those who serve You, O God, You prepare a table before us, a feast for us.  Those who persecute us will see that your provision and care for us is overwhelming!  You continue to anoint us by equipping us in your Word to do the work of ministry.  Thank you for our teachers, leaders, and pastors who are doing the work of ministry to prepare us for this time.  Our cup overflows with spiritual nourishment as you lead us into spiritual battle in this world.  Thank you Lord for caring for us! (v.5)

Our Father, we look forward to the day when Christ will return.  We await the time when truth is restored and our dwelling made with you forever.  Until then, show us your goodness and help us to show goodness and mercy to others.  Freely You have given, and freely we have received.  Let us now give the Gospel freely so that others might receive.” (v.6)

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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