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/_.jpg" width=120 height=90 alt="" border=0 align=left hspace=5>Learning to Pray (Part 9):

by Lynn Anderson


    On our pathway toward “Learning to pray by praying the Psalms” we now approach the Eighth, and most important discovery of all, the Psalms draw us into encounter with God.

    Oh yes, the Psalms reflect the delights and laments of God’s people. And they alert us to a wide range of prayer concerns. They free us from self-centered prayers. They lead us into the experiences of those around us. They link us up with the long story of the people of God. They put us at peace with ambiguity. Yet above all of this, the prayed Psalms sensitize us to the presence of The Holy One and profoundly enrich our understanding of Him.

...the prayed Psalms sensitize us to the presence of The Holy One and profoundly enrich our understanding of Him.
    No matter how eloquent or how articulate our descriptions and definitions of God, they will never be nearly enough, nor totally accurate. The Transcendent One is larger than all of that. Even Scripture speaks of Him only in metaphor. He is a door, a storm, a warrior, a rock, a king, and a fortress, a father and so much more. But each of these metaphors only suggests one glimpse of God, one point of observation. The Psalmists know that. So their best words and metaphors only awaken our imaginations and longings in Deity’s general direction.

    Yet, in the Psalter, God is the center of focus. Adoration of Him (29); Trust in Him (46); Hope in Him (40); Mercy from Him (51); Blessings at His hand (104); Awe at His holiness (103); Trembling at His judgments (76); Amazement at His majesty (147); Disappointment, even anger at His sovereign choices (42 & 88); Warmed by His steadfast love (136); On and on the brush moves across the ancient canvas painting form, color and tint to the Divine portrait. Always sensitizing us to the presence and the nature of God.

    We desperately need regular reminders of His presence and nature or else our attempts at worship drift downward from Yahweh wonder, into “golden calf” country, where the focus is more on us than on God. So the Psalms continually remind us that worship is about God and not about us. They tug us upward to keep our eyes and hearts on Heaven.

      Title: ""
      Author: Lynn Anderson
      Publication Date: November 1, 2001


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