A Discussion of Psalm 115 — A Psalm written to you by name

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Read with me for a moment, Psalm 115. Read it aloud to yourself. (I’m serious, no skimming! The word of God is only as powerful in you as much as you actually read it.)

Psalm 115

That is such a precious Psalm (yeah, ok, they’re all precious). It’s always been one of my favorites. I love that he starts with the great cry of every Christian’s life:

 Not to us, O LORD [literally, O YHWH, or Jehovah, which is God’s real name],

not to us, but to Your name give glory!

 We could stop right there. Close the book. Close the browser tab. That’s all you need. That’s the life prayer, amen and amen.

But ok, we’ll continue…

I cherish verses 2-3. I wrote a long time ago (i.e. 5 months ago, but a long time in blog time) about how often I wrestle with how my infertility presents our faith to non-believers. I wrestle the most with this because I live in a land dominated by another religion, so mine stands out drastically to everyone I meet. Moreover, in this culture having a child is basically the entire purpose of every women’s life. So I fear that God won’t get the greatest glory when they see my barrenness. I literally do hear their voices when I read verse 2…

Why should the nations say, “Where is there God?”

 –But, mercifully, immediately, we have our mouth-shutting response. –

Our God is in the heavens; He does all that He pleases.

After berating their make-believe gods in verses 4-8, we hear this plea cried out in verses 9-11:

 O Israel, trust in the LORD!

            He is their help and their shield!

O house of Aaron, trust in the LORD!

            He is their help and their shield!

You who fear the LORD, trust in the LORD!

            He is their help and their shield!

At first I wanted to say that as the Psalmist is crying out in desperation (can you hear it in his voice?), begging everyone he knows to trust in the LORD, you can almost hear him inserting your name – but I don’t even need to say it, because he does just that in verse 11! With all his might, this man was begging those people whose God was the LORD so many years ago, and he even thought to beg you so many years later. Trust in the LORD! Not in those silly idols he described in verses 4-8. Not in things made by human hands. Not in things you can see. Trust in Jehovah. He is your Help – He will help you in whatever circumstance; He is your Shield – He will protect you from the circumstance you can’t handle.

Would you humble yourself with me right now and recite that verse to yourself?

O _____________ (your name), trust in the LORD! He is your help and your shield.

And what hope this Psalm leaves us with. Not only can you trust Him. Not only is He your help and your shield. But listen to verses 12-13.

The LORD has remembered us; He will bless us;

            He will bless the house of Israel;

            He will bless the house of Aaron;

He will bless those who fear the LORD,

            both the small and the great.

He’s talking about you again! God has not forgotten you. If you got your period or a negative pregnancy test in the last 30-something days, you need to be reminded: The LORD has not forgotten you! The LORD will bless you!

Let’s do it again. Say this truth with your name:

The LORD has remembered ____________ (your name); He will bless ________ (your name).

Let that sink in.

His words in verse 14 are my sincere prayer for you as I write this.

May the LORD give you increase,

you and your children!

May you be blessed by the LORD,

            who made heaven and earth!

And the ending, like the beginning, shouts forth our anthem, even on this day of barrenness:

But we will bless the LORD from this time forth and forevermore. Praise the LORD!

One more time, claim this as your own.

But _____________ (your name) will bless the LORD from this time forth and forevermore. Praise the LORD!

Praise the LORD.

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