Lenten Devotional: April 1
My heart is steadfast, O God, my heart is steadfast; I will sing and make melody. Awake, my soul! Awake, O harp and lyre! I will awake the dawn. Psalm 108: 1-2
I have a habit of singing to myself. Sometimes it’s under my breath if I’m in public, but when I’m alone and scared, I sing the 23rd Psalm to keep myself calm, to remind myself that God is with me. Or, if I am on my way to run 8 miles and my confidence is waning, I will blast Eye of the Tiger in my car, and somehow, it changes my insides.
We all have the things we tell ourselves that may not be true, but maybe we hope will soon become true. The Psalms are usually stories to God; letters of anger or gratitude or love. But this small piece of this psalm is more like a letter to the writer himself. It seems as if God is, for a brief moment, not addressed and the writer is telling himself something he wishes to be true, or to soon be true.
We all have a way of expressing things aloud in hopes that it will change us on the inside. It may be singing to ourselves, or simply declaring “Yes, I will be on time for our class. Meet you there!” Or the more avid commitment that we know we will not meet unless others know about it: “I am committing to praying every day at dinner for the next 40 days.” Voicing our hopes helps us act them out. Indeed, sometimes changing the outside can change our insides.
May we hear the words of this psalm and, perhaps, speak them aloud in hopes that our own hearts will be steadfast and calm in God’s love. And maybe, perhaps just for a moment, even we can sing our joy out into the world.