Years ago, I remember having a conversation with my grandma. We were talking about scripture and our favorite passages. In the course of that conversation, she made the comment, “There is a lot of comfort to be found in the Psalms.” I was just a young chap when we had this conversation, and since then, my grandma has passed away. But little did I know at the time that, all these years later, I would discover just how true her statement was.
I am convinced that becoming intimately familiar with the Psalms is necessary for developing a life of prayer and worship. The book itself is a collection of songs written by godly people who were not afraid to express themselves to the Lord. When they were happy, they sang to God in joy. When they were hurting, they ran to God with their pain. When they were angry, they ran to God with their outrage—unfiltered and without mincing words.
In this way, I think the Psalms can teach us a couple of things. The first is that our prayers should be honest. If we are angry, we should bring our anger to God with full transparency. Some Christians have a tendency to bury their emotions and hide from God. This is very unhealthy. If a person constantly buries their emotions (especially the negative ones), all they end up doing is planting a bomb that will explode one day. It can be quite destructive. Some Christians make the opposite mistake, though. They publicize their emotions in an unhealthy way for all to see. In the age of social media, there are endless opportunities to do this. This is unhealthy, too. The truth is that, while it is good to have friends with whom we can share our pain, it is only God who can handle the deep cries of the soul. The Psalms teach us to carry those cries to him with humble honesty.
This brings us to the second thing the Psalms can teach us, namely, that God is a good Father. He invites us to bring everything to him, even the negative and unpleasant stuff of our lives—whether sorrow or sin. We will only learn to do this when we come to terms with a very important truth: God can handle our crap. All of it. And when he takes our sorrows up, then we can find the peace we need. We will find the comfort we were always longing for, just like my grandma said so long ago.
If you are interested in learning more about the Psalms, check out these videos below. I hope they are a blessing to you.