March 13

My heart shall rejoice in your salvation. Psalm 13:5 

Are any among you suffering? They should pray. Are any cheerful? They should sing songs of praise. James 5:13 

Prayer is an important part of our life. How do you think of prayer? Do we always take much time to think about it?  We often don’t think about praying until things are a mess, and then we remember that we can ask God for help. He does promise to always listen to our prayers, but some days all we manage is to pray our requests for help and then forget about our source of help and salvation. It seems that God might expect a bit more of us. After all, He is with us all the time, in good times and in bad and everything in between. 

Psalm 13 is a song of praise at deliverance from enemies. In the first few verses David is, as he often is, worried about his enemies overtaking him. But, he knows that God will not let that happen, and has in fact saved him. He rejoices at this salvation and composes Psalms of praise. For example, “I will bless the LORD at all times; His praise will always be on my lips.” (Psalm 34:1) Always on my lips? Can we praise God all the time? 

James tells us that there are many occasions where we can and should pray. If someone is suffering they should pray and we should pray with them. If we are cheerful, whether from one big happy event or just plain cheerful we should be singing songs of praise to God.  In I Thessalonians 5:16-18 we read:  “Rejoice at all times. Pray without ceasing. Give thanks in every circumstance, for this is God’s will for you in Christ Jesus” We can do this – we might begin with gratitude, thanking God for all He has done for us. We can incorporate prayers into our daily chores and activities. We can admit our failures to God, after all He already knows all about them, and then accept that He forgives us.  We can sing praises; there are lots of songs for us to do that whether we sing well or not. And we can remember to listen, just be quiet for a while and let God speak to us. He has promised to listen, to forgive us, and to take our worries away. 

Lord, our hearts rejoice in the gifts of your gospel! May we praise you in times of joy and in times of sadness. Help us to lift our hands in worship to you both when we cry and when we laugh, because your salvation is steadfast. Let our lives become a never-ending prayer to You.  In Jesus’ name we pray Amen. 

Chris Gabel