THIS BUCK AMAZED ME, LEAPING FROM THE BEACH, INCHES FROM MY WINDOW
LEAPING OVER THE MOUNTAINS, BOUNDING OVER THE HILLS.
JESUS CULTURE SINGS THIS — LET IT WASH OVER YOU.
PSALM 9 SINGS OF THESE GLORIOUS TIMES WHEN GOD COMES,
WHEN GOD FIGHTS FOR US,
WHEN HE IS A STRONGHOLD IN TIMES OF TROUBLE.
LAST WEEK I WAS IN THE TEXAS PRISONS AND DESPITE ALL THE PREPARATION,
I ALMOST DIDN’T GET IN, FOR I HAD A NEW WISCONSIN DRIVER’S LICENSE THAT
DID NOT MATCH THEIR RECORDS.
WE STOOD OUTSIDE THE PRISON GATE PRAYING,
WHILE THE OFFICER TRIED TO FIND A WAY, MAKING PHONE CALLS…
WANTING TO LET US IN, BUT NOT WANTING TO LOSE HIS JOB.
OUR NERVOUSNESS INCREASED AS TIME PASSED,
THE GATE OPENED!
HE HAD FOUGHT FOR US AND I GAVE THANKS WITH MY WHOLE HEART.
THIS IS THE STORY OF PSALM 9.
OTHER TIMES, GOD HIDES, AGAIN, LIKE A DEER.
AS I WAS TRYING TO LEAVE MY HOME FOR THE PRISON TOUR,
HURRYING FOR I WAS GOING TO STOP FIRST IN A MILWAUKEE PRISON THAT AFTERNOON,
I BACKED UP MY CAR TO LOAD IT, AND BACKED RIGHT INTO A SNOWBANK
LORD, PLEASE PLEASE DON’T LET ME BE STUCK, NOT NOW, PLEASE
BUT I WAS STUCK
LORD, HELP ME GET OUT
BUT I COULDN’T GET OUT
LORD, YOU PROMISED TO BE A HUSBAND TO THE WIDOW,
HELP ME FIND A MAN TO HELP ME
BUT I ONLY GOT ANSWERING MACHINES
AND I HAD A MELT-DOWN IN THE MIDDLE OF MY SNOWY DRIVEWAY
WHERE ARE YOU, LORD?
WHY ARE YOU HIDING FROM ME?
PSALM 10 IS THE PSALM FOR THE TIMES WHEN IT FEELS LIKE GOD IS HIDING
I did get out of the snowbank, digging and praying, and then, Oh Thank You, Jesus! I was out.
As for feeling abandoned, when I was out I saw I’d gotten a text from my friend Twila (who is about as big as a minute) I’m on my way and I’m pretty good with a shovel. Tears. Emmanuel.
I know this trouble is so small compared to the pain I saw in prison — and yet God cares for my small troubles as He cares for the enormous pain of what my dad used to call “real trouble.” He careth, Peter said, for you.
There are so many stories from my time in prison — women who seemed as hard as flint softening…women as tender and as mature as any women I’ve met outside the prison walls…His Spirit is moving, and I always am so strengthened, knowing that though He hides — He is ALWAYS THERE. Discipleship Unlimited has printed so many Idol Lies Guides (many of you have helped with that financially) — and women are getting set free. Free from addictions, free from being abusers or being abused, free from the cycle of sin. I walk out shaking my head in wonder, thinking: You are real. You are setting the captive free.
And so many of the volunteers are ex-offenders whose lives have been transformed by Christ. They are full of grace — for working in prison is challenging. A service that was to begin at 6 P. M was postponed until 9 because of a fight that broke out in the cafeteria — we waited — and finally we began — a short service, yet God moved mightily.
God hides and then He appears. taking our breath away.
These are not short psalms, so we will take the heart of them so that you aren’t overwhelmed. They beautifully describe the highs and lows of our walk with God, and how we should respond to each. And then, believe it or not, Lent is upon us. We will stay in the psalms for Lent, continuing this journey, but new sisters may join us. As I look ahead, there are some glorious psalms, and I have a BEAUTIFUL sermon (maybe the best I’ve ever heard) from Mike Reeves on Psalm 15. It will be a rich Lent of increasing intimacy with the One who died and rose again.
1. What stood out to you from the above and why?
2. If possible, share a recent time when God came bounding.
Monday-Wednesday Bible Study
WHEN GOD FEELS NEAR
3. Read Psalm 9:1-12.
A. Describe the high that David experienced and how he responded in verses 1-12. Find key phrases of praise.
B. Now you describe some recent highs God has given you and respond with praise, using David’s words as a springboard.
Last week Staci was driving, remembering God’s kindness to her, and then asked Him to make real to her his approval of her, and her spirit began to lift. Praise can lead us to petition. Right now, as I write this, I am remembering God’s mercy in getting me to Texas, out of the snowbank, and then through the locked gates. And so I am praying, as I am returning, and a winter storm is in Wisconsin, for continued protection and help.(He gave it — my car started after sitting a week in below zero temps — the roads icy, but I was steady, and I was so glad to be home.)
4. Read Psalm 9:13-14 and describe how David petitions, following his praise.
5. Petition the Lord for a need you have, using David’s words in verses 13-14 as a springboard.
6. Read Psalm 9:15-20
A. What truths has David seen about the Lord in verses 15-18?
B. What petition does he therefore make in verses 19-20?
WHEN GOD HIDES
Being in the prisons is wonderful and heart-breaking. I see things I cannot talk about because I want to keep going to the prisons, but oh! And I also know that there are many persecuted Christians overseas locked up, tortured, and martyred. And I cry, “Arise, Lord! Lift up your hand, O God. Do not forget the helpless.” (Psalm 10) I can pray this psalm with passion, and I know Jesus, their Advocate, is praying it too. Bonhoeffer, who will help us in the psalms during Lent, says to always imagine the voice of Jesus in these psalms.
7. Often the first line of the psalm tells you the whole theme — what question is asked in Psalm 10:1?
8. Read Psalm 10:2-11 and find some realities that grieve the psalmist, that grieve the heart of Christ.
9. Read Psalm 10:12-18 and then pray it for those who are victims of injustice, for the persecuted church — ask God to help you to care as He does, for your heart to be broken with the things that break His heart.
IF YOU HAPPEN TO HAVE MY GUIDE, A WOMAN OF WORSHIP, PSALM 10 IS ON THE MUSICAL CD, AND IT IS BEAUTIFUL. SO LISTEN TO IT! WE ALSO HAVE THE LINKS TO THE PSALM PROJECT:
10. Listen to the following message on Psalm 10 from Stuart Olyott from Liverpool and share your notes:
11. WHAT’S YOUR TAKE-A-WAY AND WHY?