Psalms 365

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Here are a few endorsement of Psalms 365: Develop a Life of Worship and Prayer the winner of both a Word Award in the devotional/inspirational category and the Grace Irwin Best Book of the Year Award.
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I’m not certain I’d be alive without the Psalms. While my wife was losing her family to Huntington’s disease we lived in its inspiring pages. We still do. David’s devotional is a welcome companion on this journey, particularly for those needing a fresh shot of hope.

Phil Callaway
award-winning author & Christian humorist, www.laughagain.org

God uses vessels in his hands to touch us exactly where and when we need it most. In our own experience, David’s daily insights from Psalms have been great. Not just in an educational sense, though that too, but his devotions touch us right where we need it. And often, it’s a word we can then share with a friend in need in a timely manner. Online and now in book form, both are a blessing!

Pastors Marjorie and Akihiro Mizuno
Christian Life International, Nagoya, Japan

The main body parts for reading the Bible aren’t the eyes and brain; it’s the hands and feet. This theme is woven throughout Psalms 365. As it should be! The focus on living the Word, or as James puts it, “doing it” (James 1:25) is what makes this study in the Psalms top-notch.

Dr. Lawson Murray
President, Scripture Union Canada

For a closer look at Psalms 365: Develop a Life of Worship and Prayer click here.

You Called and I Rescued You

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I will praise the LORD!

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Backyard garden glory — photo by David Kitz

(Psalm 81:5-10, NIV)*

I heard an unknown voice say:

“I removed the burden from their shoulders;
    their hands were set free from the basket.
In your distress you called and I rescued you,
    I answered you out of a thundercloud;
    I tested you at the waters of Meribah.
Hear me, my people, and I will warn you—
    if you would only listen to me, Israel!
You shall have no foreign god among you;
    you shall not worship any god other than me.
I am the LORD your God,
    who brought you up out of Egypt.
Open wide your mouth and I will fill it.

* NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION, COPYRIGHT ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 BY BIBLICA

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Volume I of Psalms 365: Develop a Life of Worship and Prayer has won the 2021 Best Book of the Year Award. For a closer look at Volumes II and III click here.

The LORD of Peace

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Today’s quote and prayer from
“Psalms 365: Develop a Life of Worship and Prayer”
by David Kitz.

Psalm 29_11Reading: Psalm 29

You are the LORD of the storm
and the LORD of peace.
When storms arise in my life
help me to trust you completely.
Lord Jesus,
grant me peace in the midst of the storm.
Amen.

Volume I of Psalms 365: Develop a Life of Worship and Prayer has won the 2021 Best Book of the Year Award. For a closer look at Volumes II and III click here.

A Place of Peace in the Midst of the Storm

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Reading: Psalm 29
A psalm of David.
Ascribe to the LORD, you heavenly beings,
ascribe to the L
ORD glory and strength.
Ascribe to the LORD the glory due his name;
worship the L
ORD in the splendor of his holiness.
The voice of the LORD is over the waters; the God of glory thunders,
the L
ORD thunders over the mighty waters.
The voice of the LORD is powerful; the voice of the LORD is majestic.
The voice of the L
ORD breaks the cedars;
the L
ORD breaks in pieces the cedars of Lebanon.
He makes Lebanon leap like a calf, Sirion like a young wild ox.
The voice of the LORD strikes with flashes of lightning.
The voice of the L
ORD shakes the desert;
the L
ORD shakes the Desert of Kadesh.
The voice of the L
ORD twists the oaks and strips the forests bare.
And in his temple all cry, “Glory!”
The LORD sits enthroned over the flood; the LORD is enthroned as King forever.
The L
ORD gives strength to his people; the LORD blesses his people with peace (NIV).*

thunderstorm

Photo by Johannes Plenio on Pexels.com

Reflection
In Psalm 29 we see and hear the LORD, the God of the storm. There is an evocative poetic style to this psalm that helps the reader to picture the fury of the approaching tempest. But we not only see the flashes of lightning and the power of the wind, we also hear the booming thunder as it shakes the desert. The voice of the LORD twists the oaks and strips the forests bare. And in his temple all cry, “Glory!”

Nine times the psalmist repeats the phrase the voice of the LORD. In this psalm, the voice of the LORD is a very active force. The voice of the LORD thunders, breaks, strikes, shakes, twists and strips. The voice of the LORD is powerful; the voice of the LORD is majestic.

The voice of the LORD spoke the world into existence, set the planets in their orbits, and scattered the starry hosts across the heavens. A thunderstorm sweeping down from Lebanon is as nothing to Him.

But the LORD of the storm is also the LORD of peace. One day on the Sea of Galilee Jesus our Lord brought peace to the storm. A furious squall came up, and the waves broke over the boat, so that it was nearly swamped. Jesus was in the stern, sleeping on a cushion. The disciples woke him and said to him, “Teacher, don’t you care if we drown?” 

He got up, rebuked the wind and said to the waves, “Quiet! Be still!” Then the wind died down and it was completely calm (Mark 4:37-39).

Response: You are the LORD of the storm and the LORD of peace. When storms arise in my life help me to trust you completely. Lord Jesus, grant me peace in the midst of the storm. Amen.

Your Turn: Jesus says to us, “Why are you so afraid? Do you still have no faith?” (Mark 4:40). Do you hear him?

* NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION, COPYRIGHT ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 BY BIBLICA

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Volume I of Psalms 365: Develop a Life of Worship and Prayer has won the 2021 Best Book of the Year Award. For a closer look at Volumes II and III click here.

An Overtime Victory

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Today’s quote and prayer from
“Psalms 365: Develop a Life of Worship and Prayer”
by David Kitz.

Psalm 28b -365Reading: Psalm 28:6-9

LORD God,
help me to grasp the full extent of the victory
I have in you.
Now I ask you to hear my prayer,
“Save your people and bless your inheritance;
be their shepherd and carry them forever.”
Amen.

Volume I of Psalms 365: Develop a Life of Worship and Prayer has won the 2021 Best Book of the Year Award. For a closer look at Volumes II and III click here.

A Come from Behind Olympic Victory

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Reading: Psalm 28:6-9
Praise be to the LORD,
for he has heard my cry for mercy.
The L
ORD is my strength and my shield;
my heart trusts in him, and he helps me.
My heart leaps for joy,
and with my song I praise him.
The LORD is the strength of his people,
a fortress of salvation for his anointed one.
Save your people and bless your inheritance;
be their shepherd and carry them forever
(NIV).*

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Fall reflections on Greens Creek — photo by David Kitz

Reflection
David ends Psalm 28 with a doxology of praise. Yes, it is good and fitting to praise the LORD. He hears our cry for mercy. To those who seek to know Him, He is not a God of harsh judgment or we would all perish. He is my shield and strength despite my frequent failings. David declares, “My heart trusts in him, and he helps me.” I can join in David’s declaration and personally testify to the truth of these words, “My heart trusts in him, and he helps me.”

Our God does not stand afar off. He is near to those who call on Him.

David was not one to be shy or reserved in his expression of praise. He exults, “My heart leaps for joy, and with my song I praise him.” When David brought the Ark of the Covenant to Jerusalem, he gave full expression to his joy.  Wearing a linen ephod, David was dancing before the LORD with all his might, while he and all Israel were bringing up the ark of the LORD with shouts and the sound of trumpets (2 Samuel 6:14-15).

Recently, I watched as Canada’s women’s Olympic hockey team scored a late-rally, come-from-behind, overtime victory over a shocked American team. There was no shortage of leaping, dancing and rejoicing in the Canadian ranks. The outburst of praise and jubilation was completely fitting for them.

But as born-again children of God, redeemed by the blood of the Lamb, we have a far greater reason—an eternal reason—for bursting forth in praise. Our Savior, the Lord Jesus Christ has scored a late-rally, come-from-behind, overtime victory over death, hell and the grave. And he scored that victory for you and me. Together we are on an international team—Team Believer—believers in Jesus. What a victory he has won! What a celebration!

We join with David in declaring, “The LORD is the strength of his people, a fortress of salvation for his anointed one.”

Response: LORD God, help me to grasp the full extent of the victory I have in you. Now I ask you to hear my prayer, “Save your people and bless your inheritance; be their shepherd and carry them forever.” Amen.

Your Turn: Why do we put limits on our expressions of praise to God, when our praise is exuberant and boundless at sporting events?

* NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION, COPYRIGHT ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 BY BIBLICA

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Volume I of Psalms 365: Develop a Life of Worship and Prayer has won the 2021 Best Book of the Year Award. For a closer look at Volumes II and III click here.

The Redeeming Sacrifice

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Today’s quote and prayer from
“Psalms 365: Develop a Life of Worship and Prayer”
by David Kitz.

Psalm 28_1aReading: Psalm 28:1-5

LORD God,
have mercy on me.
Do not drag me away with the wicked,
with those who do evil.
I put my trust in the redeeming sacrifice of your Son, Jesus.
You are my help and salvation.
Amen.

Volume I of Psalms 365: Develop a Life of Worship and Prayer has won the 2021 Best Book of the Year Award. For a closer look at Volumes II and III click here.

Do You Want Justice in This Life?               

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Reading: Psalm 28:1-5
Of David.
To you, LORD, I call;
you are my Rock, do not turn a deaf ear to me.
For if you remain silent,
I will be like those who go down to the pit.
Hear my cry for mercy as I call to you for help,
as I lift up my hands toward your Most Holy Place.
Do not drag me away with the wicked,
with those who do evil,
who speak cordially with their neighbors
but harbor malice in their hearts.
Repay them for their deeds and for their evil work;
repay them for what their hands have done
and bring back on them what they deserve.
Because they have no regard for the deeds of the LORD
and what his hands have done,
he will tear them down
and never build them up again
(NIV).*

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The abbey ruins at the Mackenzie King Estate, Gatineau Park — photo by David Kitz

Reflection
David begins Psalm 28 with a plea for God to hear him. As the psalm progresses it becomes clear this is a plea not only for mercy, but also for justice. Hear my cry for mercy as I call to you for help, as I lift up my hands toward your Most Holy Place. Do not drag me away with the wicked, with those who do evil, who speak cordially with their neighbors but harbor malice in their hearts.

The cry for fairness is perhaps the most universal of all human desires. What is the most oft repeated complaint in a kindergarten class? If you guessed, “That’s not fair!” you win the gold star. A desire for equality of opportunity and fairness is simply part of our human constitution; it’s bred into us.

Governments are defeated and revolutions happen when leaders fail the test of fairness and equality under the law. But all too often we do not see justice served in this life. The murderous Pol Pot was never brought to justice though three million Cambodians died under his regime. On a personal level, you too may have suffered a grievous injustice. When we become aware of such offences and heinous crimes, David’s call for justice rings true and clear. Repay them for their deeds and for their evil work; repay them for what their hands have done and bring back on them what they deserve.

The oppressed and the oppressor will meet the God of justice in the afterlife. But the redeemed have this assurance, ‘He will wipe every tear from their eyes. There will be no more death’ or mourning or crying or pain, for the old order of things has passed away” (Revelation 21:4).

Response: LORD God, have mercy on me. Do not drag me away with the wicked, with those who do evil. I put my trust in the redeeming sacrifice of your Son, Jesus. You are my help and salvation. Amen.

Your Turn: When you see injustice around you, do you take it to God in prayer? Are there other biblical ways to respond to injustice?

* NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION, COPYRIGHT ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 BY BIBLICA

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Volume I of Psalms 365: Develop a Life of Worship and Prayer has won the 2021 Best Book of the Year Award. For a closer look at Volumes II and III click here.

I Remain Confident of This

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Today’s quote and prayer from
“Psalms 365: Develop a Life of Worship and Prayer”
by David Kitz.

Psalm 27_13Reading: Psalm 27:7-14

Lord God,
this is my confession,
“I am still confident of this:
I will see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living.”
I will,
“Wait for the LORD.”
I will,
“Be strong and take heart and wait for the LORD.”
Amen.

Volume I of Psalms 365: Develop a Life of Worship and Prayer has won the 2021 Best Book of the Year Award. For a closer look at Volumes II and III click here.

Does God Hear Me When I Pray?

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Reading: Psalm 27:7-14
Hear my voice when I call, O LORD;
Be merciful to me and answer me.
Do not turn your servant away in anger;
You have been my helper.
Do not reject me or forsake me, O God my Savior.
Though my mother and father forsake me,
The LORD will receive me.
Teach me your way, O LORD;
Lead me in a straight path because of my oppressors.
Do not turn me over to the desire of my foes,
For false witnesses rise up against me breathing out violence.
I am still confident of this:
I will see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living.
Wait for the LORD;
Be strong and take heart and wait for the LORD (NIV).*

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Through the open window of prayer — Mackenzie King Estate, Gatineau Park — photo by David Kitz

Reflection
Is God listening? Do I have His full attention? Is He even there? Even people of great faith ask questions such as these. Listen to David’s plea, “Hear my voice when I call, O LORD.”

David’s psalms are replete with calls for God to listen and then quickly respond to his cries for help. These pleas for a listening ear happen with such frequency throughout the Book of Psalms that one can be forgiven for wondering if God is deaf. In our minds we know this is an absurd proposition. He who formed the ear can surely hear the faintest whispered prayer or unvoiced thought. But despite what our intellect knows, we still plead for His listening ear. Along with David we cry out, “Hear my voice when I call, O LORD; be merciful to me and answer me.”

I suspect the problem in prayer is not that we are speaking to a deaf God, but rather we, the petitioners, are deaf to God’s answers. The patriarchs and prophets of old heard the voice of God. They conversed with the LORD Almighty. Many of these conversations are recorded verbatim in the Old Testament. A fine example of this is found in Exodus as Moses speaks with the LORD at the burning bush.

Have we lost the ability to hear God? Has a great collective deafness settled across humanity?

In a cold world filled with rejection, there is a God. There is a God of mercy the lonely soul can turn to. There is One who understands. There is One who listens to our anguished prayers. David discovered and knew that reality. We can join with David and say, Though my mother and father forsake me, the LORD will receive me.”

Response: LORD God, this is my confession, “I am still confident of this: I will see the goodness of the LORD in the land of the living.” I will, “Wait for the LORD.” I will, “Be strong and take heart and wait for the LORD.” Amen.

Your Turn: Are there times when you doubt God is listening to your prayers? How do you know He is there? Has the LORD spoken to your heart?

* NEW INTERNATIONAL VERSION, COPYRIGHT ©1973, 1978, 1984, 2011 BY BIBLICA

BGBG_v4.3_150[1818]

Volume I of Psalms 365: Develop a Life of Worship and Prayer has won the 2021 Best Book of the Year Award. For a closer look at Volumes II and III click here.