“Blessed is the man who walks not in the counsel of the wicked, nor stands in the way of sinners, nor sits in the seat of scoffers; but his delight is in the law of the LORD, and on his law he meditates day and night” (ESV).
You know those nights…the nights that are too long. Worries, fears, sadness, anger, depression, illness…whatever the reason, sleep does not come. Tossing and turning doesn’t help. How many times can you say, “Help me God”? The mind spin gets me the most. Rehashing the words, thinking over and over again what you wished you had said or done. Thinking and planning on what you wish you could do or say, knowing you will have no opportunity to do anything about it. This has been my night song the last few weeks. The night song has started to take over the day as well.
Every year I take a trip through the Psalms. If you read five Psalms a day, you will finish in thirty days. I have added a special day for the 119th Psalm because it is so long. Coincidentally, this year I started in early March, before this fear and the disruption of normal life happened. It is taking me longer to go through the Psalms this time because I am so captivated by how life and history only changes in outward appearances. Evil is evil, whether in King David’s day, or mine. In many ways, we face the same struggles as He did. They just have new names. Reading the Psalms through the lens of panorama CoVid has given me a new blessing. I am learning how to combat the mind spin.
In the middle of one particularly bad night this week, phrases from the Psalms started popping into a tiny corner of my mind. Sometimes our struggles distract us from the obvious. Words like “Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good”. When I allowed my mind to spin off in a different direction of meditation on the few phrases and verses that are buried in my heart, I realized two things. I have not memorized enough scripture, and even the small amount of God’s word that was spinning in my thoughts calmed me and lifted the burden. It has given me a new kind of joy, and it has been such an ‘aha’ moment that I wanted to share it with others. Let’s sing the first verse.
“Blessed is the man (and woman) who…meditates on his law day and night.”
This is one big spin blocker. Throw a monkey wrench into that negative mind spin from the enemy with this one truth: God’s way brings blessing. Wrapped up in a few short words, the Psalmist hands us a gift that fills and controls the universe. God never makes a mistake! If I need help and direction, I need to head toward God. Not my own thoughts on how to handle the problem. Not ‘follow your heart’ babble that the world chants. Not our government. Not questions, but solid truth. I do not need other people to agree with me, nor do they have to do what I want for this truth to do its healing work in my heart. God’s way is best; and if I meditate on His Ways, help will come, even in the middle of the storm.
The Psalms begin with a challenge to go God’s way, and through the rest of these beautiful songs, the Psalmist reveals his own search and struggle to build strong tower of strength in his soul. If ever there was time, this is the time to sing this joy song.