Posts Tagged ‘Blessings from Psalms’

What’s Your Name?

April 22, 2019 2 comments

Hello my name isDeciding what to name a child can be challenging. While I’ve passed the stage of naming babies, today, I’m faced with what to name a character in a book. That too can prove challenging.

When a character enters a scene, the person’s name usually pops in my head at the same time. However, before accepting this moniker as the appropriate tag for the person, I do a little research just to make sure it isn’t the name of a celebrity or a politician or some other famous person.

I also want a villain’s name  to sound . . . well . . . villainous, and a strong character to have a strong sounding name. Think “Rocky” and you get the picture.

The Bible is full of great names for both babies  and characters. These are names that have been around for thousands of years, and have quite literally stood the test of time. But, there are many “one time use” names in the Bible as well.

For instance, in the book of Hosea, God instructs a prophet to name his daughter “No Mercy” (Hosea 1:6). The son who came later was named “Not My People” (Hosea 1:9). Their Hebrew names Lo-ruhama and Lo-ammi never quite caught on as popular names for offspring, but those names portrayed the message God was endeavoring to send His people at that time.

In the book of Ruth, a widow named Naomi, who had lost two sons, decided she wanted to be called Bitter. She wanted this name change because she said, “the Almighty has dealt bitterly with me” (Ruth 1:20).

If you wanted a name to reflect how God has dealt with you, what would you call yourself?

I would call myself Blessed. I pray it would be your name as well. We are all Blessed.

Blessed is he whose help is the God of Jacob, whose hope is in the Lord his God.”
Psalm 146:5

Don’t Miss A Blessing

August 22, 2018 Leave a comment


I was running late when I arrived at our church for the worship service last Sunday, so I quietly slipped in the back door and chose the first seat available.

It was on the other side of the auditorium from where my husband and I usually sit. This location on the “outer fringes” would not have suited him, but since I was alone and trying not to disturb others with my late arrival, I scooted into an empty row of seats just as the worship leader began leading the congregation in a praise song.

Within seconds, though, a middle-aged couple in front of me caught my attention. I wasn’t acquainted with them, but I could tell, by the way they sang the praise choruses with familiarity and enthusiasm, they were probably regular churchgoers. At one point during the singing, the husband looked over, smiled at his wife, slipping his arm around her waist. She, in turn, patted his hand. Their loving gestures seemed to demonstrate a worshipful delight at sharing this experience together.

As I observed their obvious love for the Lord and for each other, it made me smile, and I felt blessed.

At the beginning of the second song, the couple’s son and daughter-in-law joined the couple, appearing to apologize for their late arrival. Although I was just guessing at their relationship, the “son” was the exact height and spitting image of his “dad,” so I felt safe in making this assumption. As soon as the younger couple unashamedly greeted the older couple with hugs and kisses, they too joined in singing the worship songs.

As I observed their outward affection toward one another, it made me smile, and I felt blessed.

As soon as the pastor began his sermon, all four individuals opened their well-worn Bibles and followed along as he read the Scriptures. Each one wrote down in the worship folder the different points the pastor was emphasizing in his message. When the pastor made a humorous remark about families in his talk, the four of them looked at each other and laughed, whispering back and forth for a moment as they enjoyed the joke together.

As I observed their attentiveness and serious approach to the hearing of God’s word, it made me smile, and I felt blessed.

On my way home from church, I thought about how four ordinary people had been a blessing to me. They were not Hollywood glamorous or especially attractive from a physical standpoint. Their clothes were not expensive or fashionable. None of them spoke any words of wisdom to me or gave me any spiritual insight.

Yet, they blessed me because they were expressing their love for each other and their love for God in a worship service.

“Oh, magnify the LORD with me, and let us exalt his name together!” Psalm 34:3

Dental Work and The Psalms

May 5, 2012 Leave a comment

I recently had to have some dental work done, and that brought me to the Psalms.  A strange statement, maybe, but I get anxious when there’s drilling and grinding and cutting taking place in the neighborhood of my brain.  Reading a Psalm helps me with that anxiety.  Something similar occurred when we were missionaries in Venezuela, and I needed to have a wisdom tooth extracted.  The small town where we lived didn’t have a dentist that could do the job, so we traveled to the capital city of Caracas for the “procedure.”  We had to wait several weeks for the appointment, so that gave me lots of time to be anxious.

The Psalms were a great comfort to me while I waited.  I wrote out several of them on a notecard and spent time meditating on them during the day.  Psalm 121:8, “The Lord will watch over your coming and going,” and Psalm 142:3, “When my spirit grows faint within me, it is you who know my way.”  These and several other verses calmed my spirit, and I was able to endure the pain and discomfort.

During my recent dental work, I was reminded of that wisdom tooth extraction and I realized that was the time when I began studying the Psalms in earnest.  Now, I make reading a Psalm every day a regular part of my morning devotional time.  I love the term David Murray uses to describe the Psalms in his blog, Therapeutic Praise. 

Here are two points to remember when reading, memorizing and meditating on the Psalms:

1.  They are extremely instructive about God.  While I’m thankful I have access to the complete Bible and revelation of God, nevertheless, if I could only have the book of Psalms, I believe I would be able to know God intimately.  Each Psalm paints colorful pictures of His mercy, His grace, His love, His wrath, His judgment, His saving power and His desire to comfort His children.

2.  They are meant to stir our emotions. These words were written as poetry, as songs.  They elicit reactions from deep within our very beings.  The writers speak of weeping, of hurting, of joy, of anguish, of shame, of loneliness.  Every human emotion is described in the pages of this book, and God is either at the focus of these deep-seated feelings or lingering in the shadows.  The Psalms teach me that our emotions are of great concern to Him.

So, “open wide” and take in some nourishment from the Psalms today.

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