Jul 22, 2019
As a deer pants for flowing streams, so pants my soul for You, O God. 2 My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When shall I come and appear before God? 3 My tears have been my food day and night, while they say to me all the day long, “Where is your God?” 4 These things I remember, as I pour out my soul: how I would go with the throng and lead them in procession to the house of God with glad shouts and songs of praise, a multitude keeping festival. 5 Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise Him, my salvation 6 and my God. My soul is cast down within me; therefore I remember You from the land of Jordan and of Hermon, from Mount Mizar. 7 Deep calls to deep at the roar of Your waterfalls; all Your breakers and Your waves have gone over me. 8 By day the Lord commands His steadfast love, and at night His song is with me, a prayer to the God of my life. 9 I say to God, my rock: “Why have You forgotten me? Why do I go mourning because of the oppression of the enemy?” 10 As with a deadly wound in my bones, my adversaries taunt me, while they say to me all the day long, “Where is your God?” 11 Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise Him, my salvation and my God.
As I was reading through Psalm 42 this week, one aspect that jumped out at me is the number of references to water. The psalmist is thirsty (vs. 2), and he compares himself to a deer panting for streams of water (vs. 1). He pours out his soul (vs. 4), and he describes God’s waterfalls, breakers, and waves (vs. 7). Several of the hymns we will sing this morning draw upon this water imagery. We call the Lord the “fount of every blessing,” from whom flow both “streams of mercy” (Come, Thou Fount Of Every Blessing) and a “healing stream” (Guide Me, O Thou Great Jehovah). Under His wings we find a “river of delight” (The Wicked Man Fears Not The Lord—Psalm 36), and from His love “streams of living water” quench His people’s thirst (Glorious Things Of Thee Are Spoken). In times of discouragement and hardship, we may cry with the psalmist, “When shall I come and appear before God,” a position of yearning and questioning that we also find in this morning’s communion hymns, O Lord Of Hosts How Lovely— Psalm 84 and Jerusalem, My Happy Home. But Christ assures us, “If anyone thirsts, let him come to Me and drink” (John 7:37). If you are here this morning panting for water, I pray that you will drink deeply of the mercies He offers us. —Henry C. Haffner
Key Words: Soul, God, Remember, Downcast, Hope, Thirst, Salvation Keystone Verse: Why are you cast down, O my soul, and why are you in turmoil within me? Hope in God; for I shall again praise Him, my salvation and my God. (Psalm 42:11) Bulletin & Newsletter