Praise the Lord.
how pleasant and fitting to praise him!
The Lord builds up Jerusalem;
he gathers the exiles of Israel.
He heals the brokenhearted
and binds up their wounds.
He determines the number of the stars
and calls them each by name.
Great is our Lord and mighty in power;
his understanding has no limit.
The Lord sustains the humble
but casts the wicked to the ground.
The Psalmist who penned these very words remains anonymous, yet places strong emphasis on “Praising the Lord” because of all that God is and all that He does for us, especially in times of hardship, pain, and trials. In fact, he says, “how pleasant and fitting to praise him!,” expressing an element of joy and freedom that comes with such an act of obedience along one’s faith journey. The Psalmist speaks of days of old when Jerusalem was in ruins and its inhabitants, God’s chosen people, were scattered and isolated, yet the Lord would gather them once again to Himself. Are there not times in our lives when we experience those feelings of isolation? Often its when walking through those “dark valleys” of our lives, believing we’re alone in our given circumstances, we must realize in reality that God is with us, waiting in His time to move, desiring to draw us nearer to Himself during those times or seasons.
We’re promised also that God “heals the brokenhearted and binds up their wounds,” meaning the mental, emotional, and spiritual injuries we suffer throughout our lives which at times leave deep scars that only the Great Physician – our heavenly Father - can over time truly heal. Through His word, the Church, wise biblical counsel, the Spiritual Disciplines (Prayer, Bible Study, Scripture Mediation, Seeking His presence), the support of a trusted friend or small faith community group become tools in His hands for the healing process. Highlighting the power behind our awesome God, the Psalmist focuses on His greatness and His understanding as he writes, “He determines the number of the stars and calls them each by name. Great is our Lord and mighty in power; his understanding has no limit.”
How often do we forget just how great and mighty is our God, Creator of heaven and earth? He knows the number of stars in the sky and the number of grains of sand on the seashore. If God cares enough to know such miniscule details as these, how much more does He care about the details of our lives, especially the one’s that cause us the heaviest burdens and struggles, causing us to battle so much with our faith? The most blessed promise given here to us comes in the concluding verse as the Psalmist writes, “The Lord sustains the humble…” as you and I surrender to Him daily, inviting Him into our circumstances with a heart of gratitude and humility, He will sustain us through all situations – in His strength and by His power.
Connecting Faith & Life:
Father, thank You for the wonderful promises in Your word that remind us that You are a compassionate, loving heavenly Father who desires to walk with us along life’s journey and heal our brokenness. As we are reminded by the Psalmist, “How pleasant and fitting it is to always praise You,” because You are worthy of our praise even in the most difficult seasons of our lives. Lord, we praise You because You are great and mighty in power, Your wisdom and understanding are infinite in all the earth. Today, may we find strength and assurance in these promises as we approach You with hearts of gratitude and humility for who You are and all that You continue to do in our lives. In Jesus’ name. Amen.