Personally EngagE with the Psalms

This Summer we’ll focus our Sunday gatherings on the Psalms and do our best to connect our hearts to these ancient prayers and praise songs. NT Wright says “The Psalms contain unique poetry expressing the biblical faith in God as Creator, Redeemer, judge, lover, friend, adversary—the whole lot. There is nothing like them. The Psalms go right to the depths of the human emotions—they don’t just skate along the top. They explore what the great promises of God mean and what we do when those promises do not seem to be coming true.”

With 150 Psalms you’ll find many different types of songs and prayers.You may find some Psalms seem angry or frustrated while others seem full of praise. You’ll read some that are prayers asking for God’s justice and others asking for His mercy. Some songs will point to the past while others look ahead to the future (you can learn more about the types of Psalms herel).

Here are a few ways you can personally engage with the Psalms this Summer

Read the Psalms

The Psalms are easy to access and most often easy to understand. If you read 2 Psalms a day this summer you could read them all! Maybe you want to read the same Psalm everyday for a week to really get to know it - you could chose to do that with the Psalm we just preached on. Maybe you want to read them from different translations (for different phrasing and readability try the New International Version, English Standard Version, New Living Translation and The Message - you can find these online at bible.com or biblegateway.com).

Pray Through a Psalm

Each Psalm is a song/prayer to God and can be used in our own personal prayer life. After becoming familiar with the psalm through reading it a few times use the words of the psalm as your prayer pausing throughout to connect the words to your personal circumstances.

Meditate on a Psalm

Read through a Psalm many times - maybe even in different translations. Maybe speak it out loud or write it out in a journal. Think about the words that are said. What does it tell us about God’s character? What does it encourage us to do in connection with God? Let these words soak into your heart.

Memorize a Psalm

One of the best ways to utilize these songs/prayers is to memorize them so that you can access them in moments when you want to connect with God or be reminded of His faithfulness for generations. 

Paraphrase a Psalm

Sometimes we just need to make a personal connection with the Bible and the best way to do it might be to paraphrase a Psalm. You can just rewrite it in your own words or even expand it to connect more personally to what you’re experiencing in life.

Create Art Inspired by the Psalm

If you write, draw, paint, sculpt, design, shoot film or photos or sing you may want to create something inspired by the words of a Psalm. Take time to sit with the Psalm and then use it to inspire you as you create. We’d love to see what you create if you want to share it with the church. Email us at andy@renewcommunities.com.