As we continue our rugged journey of exploration into the many themes of the book of Psalms, I want to remind us all that often this book will confront us with simple but vital realities for living life fully on a lonely planet. This is so true of Psalm 5.
Psalm 5 shows the living, breathing reality of the psalmist’s relationship with God through prayer.Verses 1-3 show us that he prays. In verse 1 he prays aloud and silently. In verse 2 he prays passionately and confidently. In verse 3 he prays habitually and with great purpose. In verse 5 he prays expectantly. In verses 4-6 and 9-10 he prays for justice. In verse 11-12 he prays with joy.
In short, take prayer out of this Psalm and there is very little left!
Over the last few months I’ve found myself coming back to the fresh and pressing reality of living a prayer-filled life. This is not something you squeeze into an already frantic life, but something that you make a priority, even if other things need to slide off your plate. What about you? Richard Foster, the great Christian writer on discipleship, wrote this provoking thought:
‘For those explorers in the frontiers of faith, prayer was no little habit tacked on to the periphery of their lives; it was their lives. It was the most serious work of their productive years. William Pen testified of George Fox that ‘Above all he excelled in prayer’.’(Celebrations of Discipline, p165)
Today why don’t you join the psalmist in soaking the every-day moments of your life in quiet, loud, passionate, confident, purposeful, confident, expectant and joy-filled prayer? You might want to do this by writing a prayer journal, where you note down prayers as you pray them throughout the day. You could also set aside 20 minutes at lunchtime to find somewhere quiet at work to pray, making time for listening as well as talking. There are lots and lots of practical things you can do, but most important is choosing to soak your day-to-day life in prayer.