Welcome to the Weekly Digest!
Below you will find resources to help you on your journey through the Book of Psalms. We've provided you with a reading plan for the upcoming week, journaling prompts, a weekly Spotify playlist, and ideas for prayer. Be sure to check in every week to see what we have for you next as we continue to enrich our journey through the Psalms.
Reading Plan September 19th through September 25th
Psalms21-26. Read and reflect on Psalm 23 in preparation for Sunday's teaching. You can download the reading guide for the entire series here.
Scripture memorization is an important discipline to introduce to our lives as a way to actively hide God's word in our heart. It allows us to not only internalize the text, but to share that truth with others more readily.
Memory Verses for September: Psalms 27:4-5 ESV
One thing have I asked of the Lord, that will I seek after: that I may dwell in the house of the Lord all the days of my life, to gaze upon the beauty of the Lord and to inquire in his temple.
5 For he will hide me in his shelter in the day of trouble; he will conceal me under the cover of his tent; he will lift me high upon a rock.
* A quick note on journaling: if you're new to this practice, our journey through the book of Psalms will be a great way to get started. The most important step to forming this discipline in your life is to write anything and write often. Journaling is an incredible way to slow down, digest the content of a text, let your brain internalize thoughts that may come up, and keep a record for future reflection on what God was speaking to you during your reading. Journaling can take many forms such as written prayers, bullet points, stream of consciousness, or even poetry. Try some different methods and find the one that works best for you.
Journal Prompts / Discussion Questions from Today's Teaching
These verses cast a powerful imagery of 3 entities. The suffering of David, the suffering of The Christ and your suffering in this world.
After reading these verses can you see the imagery of the Christ and the crucifixion? How does His abandonment on the cross speak to you regarding Christ sacrifice?
Have you ever had an experience like David? Has there ever been a moment when you felt like God was silent? Distant?
Read Romans 8 and think about the purpose of suffering in your life.
Even in His silence He is still God. In those moments when all we must hold onto is what God has done in the past, He is still hope. This exactly what David is saying in these verses.
How does God’s reality stand in contrast to our suffering in this life?
Again, we see the imagery of Christ as it is played out through David’s state of being. David is physically and emotionally exhausted. He is drained, like water poured out. David is spent. Who does David blame?
Read Isaiah 53:10 and think of how all of this mirrors Christ sacrifice for you.
David again calls on God to intervene. He may feel forsaken, but he prays. What does that say to you in those moments that you feel forsaken?
Does God change according to the way that we feel? Is God still good even when things are bad?
Journal Prompts for This Week's Reading
We don't thank God enough because we often don't pause to think enough. Focused times of remembrance can stir up large quantities of material that derive from God and then can be reexpressed through thanksgiving. Take time to count your blessings from "smallest" to "greatest"
The psalmist has a lively sense of the “enemy.” But he doesn’t fight the enemy, he turns him over to God. Our job is to recognize that there is an enemy and then, in prayer, to trust that God will deal with him. What are some areas of your life where you can identify the enemy at work and can begin submitting it in prayer to our Lord? Psalm 23:
God is like a good shepherd who looks after us in both good times and bad. He is also like a generous host who invites us to live in his house, enjoying its elegance and security. Where can you see His invitation to rest in Him this week? Did you accept or reject this invitation and why? Psalm 24:
“God designed and brought into being this earth and all that lives on it to provide a place in which he can share his will and his love. God’s creation is the perfect environment for experiencing God’s redemption. What are some ways you are stewarding the gifts, talents and resources you find in your life today?
Every time Christians gather in worship: we come to “seek the face of … God”; God, the “King of glory,” comes to greet us and bless us in Jesus Christ. The church at worship, with heads lifted up in expectation. Describe some ways you practically seek the face of God in worship and what are the distractions that seem to keep you from entering in with expectation and wonder? Psalm 25:
God likes our sins even less than our neighbors do. But he treats them far differently. Whereas other people reject and condemn us when we are flawed and unmanageable, God mercifully and patiently “instructs,” “leads,” and “teaches” us. Our sins are an occasion not for harsh rejection, but for loving reconciliation. Where have you seen God's patient instruction this week?
God is for us, not against us. When we realize this, we are able to spend our lives growing in God’s friendship instead of desperately and surreptitiously trying to avoid his notice. Take a moment to get "real" with your mess and allow his mercies to wash over you.
Psalm 22: 1-5 “Lord, my emotions are a poor indication of your faithfulness. The way I feel has little to do with the way you work. The answered prayers of my ancestors, the multitude of the faithful, the “praises of Israel”—these are the assurance I need to fix my prayers again in Jesus Christ. Amen.”
Psalm 22:6-11 “Dear God, let me see my life through the lens of your love, and so be able to discern in exact detail what you think of me and what you do for me in Jesus Christ. Amen.”
Psalm 22:12-21 “On the cross, Lord Jesus, you gathered all the hostility and suffering of the world (all my hostility and suffering) and made of it a mighty act of salvation and deliverance. Praise your great name! Amen.”
Psalm 22:22-31 “Sing praise to God who reigns above, the God of all creation, the God of power, the God of love, the God of our salvation; with healing balm my soul He fills, and every faithless murmur stills: to God all praise and glory” (Johann J. Schütz, “Sing Praise to God,” translated by Frances E. Cox). Amen.”