AS THE DEER…I, TOO, THIRST FOR YOU!

Psalms – Prayers of Honesty
 
Psalm 42 longs for youAs the deer panteth for the water
So my soul longeth after Thee
You alone are my heart’s desire
And I long to worship Thee
 
You alone are my strength, my shield
To You alone may my spirit yield
You alone are my heart’s desire
And I long to worship Thee
 
This chorus was sung in my growing up years and beyond. It speaks peace to our hearts when we are broken-hearted and beaten down by the world’s ways of relating to each other. This prayer song to God are words of self reflection as the writer asks, “Why are you down in the dumps, dear soul? Why are you crying the blues?” Sometimes we allow the power of people’s feelings and actions control our thoughts. When that happens, we fall deeper into a depression that is physically, emotionally and spiritually unhealthy and unproductive.
 
Psalm 42, The Message
A psalm of the sons of Korah
 
1-3 A white-tailed deer drinks
from the creek;
I want to drink God,
deep draughts of God.
I’m thirsty for God-alive.
I wonder, “Will I ever make it—
arrive and drink in God’s presence?”
I’m on a diet of tears—
tears for breakfast, tears for supper.
All day long
people knock at my door,
Pestering,
“Where is this God of yours?”
 
Psalm 42 114 These are the things I go over and over,
emptying out the pockets of my life.
I was always at the head of the worshiping crowd,
right out in front,
Leading them all,
eager to arrive and worship,
Shouting praises, singing thanksgiving—
celebrating, all of us, God’s feast!
 
5 Why are you down in the dumps, dear soul?
Why are you crying the blues?
Fix my eyes on God—
soon I’ll be praising again.
He puts a smile on my face.
He’s my God.
 
Psalm 42 deep calls to deep6-8 When my soul is in the dumps, I rehearse
everything I know of you,
From Jordan depths to Hermon heights,
including Mount Mizar.
Chaos calls to chaos,
to the tune of whitewater rapids.
Your breaking surf, your thundering breakers
crash and crush me.
Then God promises to love me all day,
sing songs all through the night!
My life is God’s prayer.
 
9-10 Sometimes I ask God, my rock-solid God,
“Why did you let me down?
Why am I walking around in tears,
harassed by enemies?”
They’re out for the kill, these
tormentors with their obscenities,
Taunting day after day,
“Where is this God of yours?”
 
Psalm 42 smile on my face11 Why are you down in the dumps, dear soul?
Why are you crying the blues?
Fix my eyes on God—
soon I’ll be praising again.
He puts a smile on my face.
He’s my God.
 
SOMETHING TO CHEW ON…
This prayer-song repeats a chorus of redemption and restoration of joy for us all with a declaration of Who God is and how He helps us see life as He sees it. Here is the prescription outlined by the Healer:
 
“Fix my eyes on God–soon I’ll be praising again.
He puts a smile on my face. He’s my God.”
 
Psalm 42 respect God
This might be good to memorize and repeat when we fall into the blues because of what life hands out. Focus is the key. Focus on God…Fix our eyes on God without looking away. When the smile leaves our faces for whatever reason, the first people to notice are usually those who taunt you for what you believe, who criticize every move you make and spend most of their time looking for your mistakes. Don’t let mere humans have power over you like that. Let God’s power rule. Let the peace of Christ in you rule. How? Focus on God. Remember all He as done, is doing and will do in our lives.
 
This chorus will be repeated in our next Psalm as well. Look for it. Better still, look and focus on God, Let us fix our eyes on God as a servant would his master waiting for the nod of His head with our marching orders. Fix means to adhere, to be attached, to never look away. Let our eyes be stuck on God! The smiles will return, our joy restored with minds to think more like Christ.
 
I want You more than gold or silver
Only You can satisfy
You alone are the real joy giver
And the apple of my eye
 
HEART CHECK:
 
Worship with thanksgiving and praise is the antidote for depression and anxiety. The Psalmist knew it. We know it. When we fix our minds, hearts and souls on the One who loved us first, loves us still and always will, we are lifted to higher thoughts–the “whatevers”, I call them:
 
Philippians 4:8 (The worship book of praise and rejoicing!)
Finally, brothers and sisters, whatever is true, whatever is noble, whatever is right, whatever is pure, whatever is lovely, whatever is admirable—if anything is excellent or praiseworthy—think about such things.
 
If you are struggling with life stuff, illness, broken hearts, failed relationships, fix your eyes on God who created you, loves you and is always with you.
 
List the ways God has pulled you through other challenging seasons of life. What do you learn about God then? What do you know about God now?
 
Remember the Giver of Life when the world tries to suck the life from you.
 
Psalm 42 smile
Dear Heavenly Father,
Thank you for always being with us. Thank you for loving us when we don’t love ourselves. Thank you for helping us get back on our feet by taking us by the hand and lifting us up by your power working in us. Thank you for the inner desire to praise and worship You alone. We do thirst for you, long for you and love you with all that is in us. Thank you for saving us. Thank you for forgiving our repentant hearts. Thank you for restoring the joy of YOUR salvation. You put the smile on our faces! I love you, Lord.
In Jesus Name, Amen

About randscallawayffm

Randy and Susan co founded Finding Focus Ministries in 2006. Their goal as former full time pastors, is to serve and provide spiritual encouragement and focus to those on the "front lines" of ministry. Extensive experience being on both sides of ministry, paid and volunteer, on the mission fields of other countries as well as the United States, helps them bring a different perspective to those who need it most. Need a lift? Call us 260 229 2276.
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