We are well into our study of Psalms. Hopefully, you are taking advantage of the lessons shared in our Life Groups. If not, you can still be part of a Life Group. Information is available on our church website forestville.org.
Penny Oesterling shares with us her thoughts on prayer and how Psalms are part of her prayer life. We ask that you follow, like, and share our blog. It is our desire to see the testimonies of what God is doing through our studies of the Bible shared with others who need to know that God is still at work and encouraging those who trust in Him.
Psalm 3 by Penny Oesterling
Many times when I pray for myself and others, I pray God’s Word back to Him. I know God’s Word is true and precious. And I’m pretty sure He loves to hear us use His own words to pray to Him. I love to pray from the Psalms because so often I find my own emotions right there in those expressed by the psalmists. Usually, I just take a few verses and personalize them for myself or others. But one day I was praying Psalm 3 which is a psalm of David when he fled from his son Absalom. As I prayed Psalm 3, using the NLT version, for some friends who were struggling, God prompted me to pray more generally by composing my prayer based on the whole Psalm. This is what I prayed that day for them and for myself.
“Lord, You are a shield around us. You hold our heads high! You hear and answer our prayers. You watch over us day and night, and so we can sleep in safety. Sometimes it seems we have so many enemies surrounding us, Lord. But our enemies won’t prevail. We belong to You, and You will rescue us, Lord, so we don’t need to fear them. You, Lord, bring us victory and blessing.”
As I prayed this prayer, I was praising God for Who He is and for what He does. I was affirming what the Word says about Him. But I also acknowledged how sometimes it seems that our enemies actually surround us and try to take us down in defeat. In my mind I was picturing an enemy army coming against those of us who were inside a castle and without a means of defending ourselves. As J. Vernon McGee said in Volume II of Thru the Bible, “Trials and sorrows are shared by all godly people, regardless of who they are or in what period of history they live. The comfort given in the psalms is for all of God’s children.”
David was fleeing Jerusalem and his kingship there. Absalom was hunting his father David to kill him. Now, THAT’s an enemy! I don’t have enemies like that, and as far as I know, no person would actually claim to be my enemy. But I do have enemies like pain and insomnia that can wreak havoc with my body, mind, and emotions. And I have spiritual enemies like Satan and his minions who want me to fail in my faith walk. I also have other enemies at times that I must fight against like selfishness, anxiety, fear, pride, an unforgiving spirit, a critical spirit, a contentious spirit, etc. But because I belong to the Lord, I don’t need to fear any of them! He is a shield around me, protecting me and strengthening me for the battle. And He will lift my head high in victory. He is already the victor, and as His Spirit works within me, I, too, will be victorious as I depend upon Him.
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