1 I call upon the LORD in my distress; He listens to my prayer and answers me. 2 Deliver me, O LORD, from lying lips And from all tongues that speak deceitfully.
3 What will he do to you, deceitful tongue? What more besides will be your fitting doom? 4 With warriors’ arrows he will pierce you through, And punish you with burning coals of broom.
5 What misery to live in Meshech’s land, In Kedar’s tents, among my enemies! 6 With people loving strife I’ve lived too long; 7 They are for war, but I’m a man of peace.
My personal spiritual journey is currently taking me on a year-long prayerful stroll through the New Testament. My focus is on what it teaches us about prayer. As well as the various questions of prayer – the who, what, where, when, why and how from which we can all learn and apply for ourselves – I’m finding many prompts for prayer, even when the subject of prayer itself isn’t being discussed.
In this short Psalm of just seven verses, thought to have been written by Jeremiah, we are given the same opportunity. It begins with a reminder that whenever we turn to the Lord, He will answer us. This assurance should encourage us to pray. Verse 2 asks specifically that we be protected from people speaking falsely about us.
A recurring theme in both Scripture and prayer is that of peace, considered here in verses 6 & 7. It prompts me to think about parts of the world which currently don’t know what peace feels like. It leads me to pray for those who are working hard to bring peace to our troubled world. Most of all, though, it challenges me to think about what I’m doing to bring about a peaceful world and to pray for God’s guidance in achieving what I can. How might this Psalm lead you in prayer?
Heavenly Father, thank you that we can turn to You in Prayer, knowing that You are always being there for us. As we serve You, may we be protected from those who may speak ill of us and of You. We pray for peace in our world and for all those working for it. Help us to do whatever we can. In the name of Our Lord Jesus Christ, the Prince of Peace. Amen!
Jeff Newall, Lay Preacher, Christ the Vine Community Church, Coffee Hall, Milton Keynes
Sing Psalms (C) The Psalmody Committee, the Free Church of Scotland