THE LORD IS MY LIGHT AND MY SALVATION—WHOM SHALL I FEAR? THE LORD IS THE STRONGHOLD OF MY LIFE—OF WHOM SHALL I BE AFRAID? —PSALM 27:1
Have you ever prayed Scripture back to God?
This is something we see modeled in Scripture and something we can do too. Our verse this month comes from a beautiful prayer/song written by King David—Psalm 27 (find out more about David and Psalm 27 here). David’s heartfelt words simply beg us to pray along with him, to reflect on our own situations and bring them before the Lord. So today, we’re going to do just that. We’re going to pray this psalm to God, bringing our own heartfelt praises, confessions, and requests to him.
1 The LORD is my light and my salvation—
whom shall I fear?
The LORD is the stronghold of my life—
of whom shall I be afraid?
Lord, you are my light! Though my situation is dark to me, you see everything, and nothing is ever hidden from you. Please guide me in this situation: ______________. I will not fear the things I cannot know, because you know all things and you are in control. And you are my salvation! When I’m lost, overwhelmed, and in desperate need of rescue, you always come to my aid. I need rescuing in this situation: __________________. Help me not to fear the things that threaten to overtake me, because I know you will rescue me. When the storms rage or the enemy attacks, you are my stronghold, my safe place. I feel unsafe and insecure in this situation: _______________. I will not fear any enemy because you are strong and you keep me safe.
2 When the wicked advance against me
to devour me,
it is my enemies and my foes
who will stumble and fall.
3 Though an army besiege me,
my heart will not fear;
though war break out against me,
even then I will be confident.
You are my protector, Lord. These are the real things I am up against: ____________. Though my situation is scary and I feel like the only thing I can do is tremble, help me instead to trust in you. Help me say, “My heart will not fear!” and “I will be confident!” not because my situation isn’t scary or uncertain, but because I have full confidence that you will bring me through.
4 One thing I ask from the LORD,
this only do I seek:
that I may dwell in the house of the LORD
all the days of my life,
to gaze on the beauty of the LORD
and to seek him in his temple.
Oh God, you are my deepest need—not my situation, not my struggle, not anything or anyone else. If I have you, I have everything. So, would you show me that you are here with me? Would you open my eyes to the utter beauty of who you are. Help me really see the wonder of your desire to dwell with me (and in me) through Christ Jesus. As I shift my gaze from other things to you, would you help my restless heart find its rest in you?
5 For in the day of trouble
he will keep me safe in his dwelling;
he will hide me in the shelter of his sacred tent
and set me high upon a rock.
6 Then my head will be exalted
above the enemies who surround me;
at his sacred tent I will sacrifice with shouts of joy;
I will sing and make music to the LORD.
You are my safe place, my firm footing, my rescue. I put all my confidence in you. I pray expectantly that you will lift me up out of this hardship: ____________. Though I am lowly and undeserving, you have elevated me to the highest place, calling me your own beloved child. So, I praise you knowing that you will keep me and rescue me and elevate me not only in this life but for all time.
7 Hear my voice when I call, LORD;
be merciful to me and answer me.
8 My heart says of you, “Seek his face!”
Your face, LORD, I will seek.
9 Do not hide your face from me,
do not turn your servant away in anger;
you have been my helper.
Do not reject me or forsake me,
God my Savior.
10 Though my father and mother forsake me,
the LORD will receive me.
O Lord, I want to seek your face, but I know that you have every reason to hide it from me. You have every reason to turn away from me and reject me because I have sinned against you in these ways: ________________. Please forgive me. I praise you because even though I sin against you, you will never reject me because Jesus has made me acceptable by paying for my sin and giving me his righteousness. So, even when my closest people reject me, I am confident that you never will.
11 Teach me your way, LORD;
lead me in a straight path
because of my oppressors.
12 Do not turn me over to the desire of my foes,
for false witnesses rise up against me,
spouting malicious accusations.
Lord, please help me know what to do. Please teach me and show me what I should do in this situation: __________________. Though people would deride me or even accuse me of doing wrong for following you, would you defend my cause? Help me disregard others' false opinions of me. So often their “wrong” is right and their “right” is wrong. Please show me what is truly right, and help me do the right thing even in the face of opposition.
13 I remain confident of this:
I will see the goodness of the LORD
in the land of the living.
14 Wait for the LORD;
be strong and take heart
and wait for the LORD.
O God, this life often feels so very uncertain, but you are certain. So, I will take heart in you, even when my heart is breaking. I will be confident in you, even when things are hard. I will find my strength in you, especially when I am weak. I long for you. All these prayers I have entrusted to you are not yet realized, still unseen. I wait for your deliverance—both in these prayers and for all time. So I hope and wait for you—looking forward to the day when all my hopes will be reality, and I will see you face to face in the land of the living, a world without end. Amen. Amen.