So Thankful for the Psalms

So Thankful for the Psalms

One of the benefits of going through hardship and trial is that we are driven to prayer. In my own struggles I have been pushed toward the Psalms as an aid in such prayer. I’ve come to appreciate them more and more. Sinclair Ferguson has said that “Reading [the Psalms] on a daily basis can hardly fail to bring you spiritual health and strength.”
John Calvin famously said of the Psalms that they are “an anatomy of all the parts of the soul.” By that he meant that all of life’s experiences are reflected in the Psalms. The Psalms are real life. They capture fear, worry, hardship, and sorrow. They also capture joy, triumph, worship, and praise.
Our spiritual forebears made the Psalms a regular part of their worship daily existence. They had the Psalms worded in metered verse so that they could more easily be sung. There are large number of such Psalms found in the Trinity Hymnal that we use here at HLPC. I’ve even enjoyed picking up a copy of such a collection in what we call the Psalter.
I encourage you to take up the Psalms as a prayer guide. Feel free to pray God’s Word back to Him and let the Psalms be a tool for expressing the joys as well as the burdens of your heart. One way I’ve found to stay in the Psalms is to read five a day. There being 150 Psalms, I can take the day of the month and start there. Then, I go ahead by 30 and so on until I’ve read five for the day. It’s always a help and an encouragement to my soul.
On Tuesday, September 25th, I read these words from Psalm 55:22- Cast your burden on the LORD, and he will sustain you; he will never permit the righteous to be moved. How can we not be encouraged by these words? They express the reality of life with its burdens and encourage us to unload those burdens on the Lord. He will sustain us through the trial. He will keep us unmoved; that is steadfast, and stable. He may not remove the trial but He will keep us close to Himself in the middle of it.
I’m so thankful for the Psalms. They affirm the reality of living in a fallen world that awaits renewal when Jesus will make all things new. They give us help in crying out to God, in seeking comfort from Him, and in giving Him worship.

Paul Bankson
pbankson@gmail.com

Paul was born and raised in Birmingham, AL and graduated from Auburn University in 1986 with a degree in Business Administration. It was at Auburn that he met his wife, Connie. They were married in Ft. Lauderdale, FL and moved to Jackson, MS where he attended Reformed Theological Seminary graduating with a Master of Divinity in 1991. Upon graduation, Paul served as a Campus Minister with RUF, the campus ministry of the PCA, at Tennessee-Martin where the Banksons lived for 5 years. They moved to Macon, GA in 1996 to work with RUF at Mercer University and then Paul joined the pastoral staff at First Presbyterian Church of Macon as an Assistant Pastor in 1999. In 2004, Paul and his family moved to Warner Robins where he served as a church planter and then organizing Pastor of Houston Lake Presbyterian Church. In December 2014 Paul completed a Doctor of Ministry degree through Reformed Theological Seminary of Orlando. Paul and Connie have three sons, Andrew (23), Stephen (20), and Matthew (15). Paul enjoys grilling, camping with his family, and Auburn sports (War Eagle!).