I’m working on a new approach to my blog series this year and using the Psalms to do so. The Psalms have brought tremendous comfort and guidance to so many for so long. Join me in taking a fresh look at each Psalm. As you read through them, I urge you to reflect, pray, and apply these devotional bits of encouragement to your own life. Today, we study and reflect on Psalms 43, 44, and 45.

Reflection 1
Discouragement, disappointment, and doubt are realities we all face from time to time. It is important to remember that God knows, sees, and cares. He understands. The bigger question is not whether we will face trying times, but what we do in them and with them. Do we find ways to persevere through them and overcome them, or do we allow them to bury us? God says to put our hope and trust in Him. He will lift us up, pull us out, and carry us through. I’m comforted to know that when life gets hard, the Lord is always near. We are never alone. You are not alone.
“Why, my soul, are you downcast? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.” Psalms 43:5

Reflection 2
There are times in life when it feels like we are alone, but we are not. There are times when it feels like God is asleep or has abandoned us. He is not and has not. There are times when we feel we are at the end of our rope. Yet when we are at the end of our rope, we get to the very beginning of our inexhaustible God. He is always there. He will never leave us or forsake us. We know this to be true. This is called living by faith. He is faithful. He loves you!
“Awake, Lord! Why do you sleep? Rouse yourself! Do not reject us forever. Why do you hide your face and forget our misery and oppression? We are brought down to the dust; our bodies cling to the ground. Rise up and help us; rescue us because of your unfailing love.” — Psalms 44:23-26

Reflection 3
May we find ways each day to pursue justice and righteousness. Giving to the poor, rescuing the hopeless, drawing close to the abandoned, finding the lost, and encouraging the discouraged. This is the daily work of our church. Engage with your church, and make justice and righteousness a real pursuit. Give money, give time, give energy, and give your heart to others. Live your life for others in ‘21.
“Your throne, O God, will last forever and ever; a scepter of justice will be the scepter of your kingdom. You love righteousness and hate wickedness…” — Psalms 45:6-7