We finish our week reading from Psalm 28 and practice conversing with God throughout our day as we become more aware of the movement of God in our lives.
00:12 Welcome to the meditation and worship series with west side church. Over the next few weeks, we will be meditating on scripture and diving into some practices. As we walk through the season of lent. Our hope is that over the course of this Lenten season, this time of meditation and worship can be a breath of fresh air as we journey towards Easter together. But start today by pausing for a moment and focusing our attention to Jesus. And may we be expectant of the movement of the holy spirit and our time together. If you were in a place to do so, close your eyes, Hold your hands out in front of you in a posture of surrender, Take a deep breath in And out And another in And out This week, we are in the book of Psalms. This is a book that is rich and beautiful and full of poetry and prayers and songs covering a vast range of emotions. Today. We're in Psalm 28 Verses one through two and six through nine. I pray to you a Lord, my rock to not turn a deaf ear to me For if you are silent, I might as well give up and die.
01:55 Listen to my prayer for mercy. As I cry out to you for help, as I lift my hands toward your holy sanctuary, Praise the Lord for he has heard my cry for mercy. The Lord is my strength and shield. I trust him with all my heart. He helps me and my heart is filled with joy. I burst out in songs of Thanksgiving, The Lord gives his people strength. He is a safe fortress for his anointed king. Save your people, bless Israel and your special possession lead them like a shepherd and carry them in your arms forever. God's desire for all of his creation is restoration and redemption for us, his people to be brought back into right relationship with him In the dark nights of life. It can be difficult to see the movement of God in our world. And it can feel like when we pray, we are just crying out into the abyss. At the beginning of this prayer, we see David engaging his entire being his hands, his words, his body, as he cries out to the Lord,
03:30 Pleads for the mercy of God and that God would hear his prayers. We know though that we are not left alone in our prayers, that the Lord is always with us and heres the depths of our souls. When we pray, He will not turn a deaf ear towards us. We see David's mood changed by the end of this prayer. As he rejoices, as God has heard him and answered him, There are a lot of ways for God to speak to us through scripture impressions or thoughts through other people. The question is, are we listening When we pray? Are we listening for an open to what God may be saying? Back to us? Prayer is meant to be a conversation and to bring closeness and a depth of relationship with God. Are we allowing our prayers to transform us as we grow in relationship with him And Robert Mulholland writes, we tend to think of prayer as something we do in order to produce the results we believe are needed, or rather to get God to produce the results. As a result, our prayer tends to be a shopping list of things to be accomplished in an attempt to manipulate the symptoms of our lives without really entering into a deep, vital transforming relationship with God.
05:21 When was the last time you sat and quieted your spirit to hear God speak As you go throughout your day today, keep in conversation with God. As things are brought to mind that you are in awe of or thankful for, or need talk to him about them. If it's possible, say them out loud Practice being in conversation with him And practice being still in quieting your mind to hear from him as well. There's no formula to this or specific set of steps. And if you don't know what to pray, borrow us home from this week, like Psalm 23 and use it as your prayer. Let's try praying Psalm 23 together. Now The Lord is my shepherd. I lack nothing. He makes me lie down in green pastures. He leads me beside quiet waters. He refreshes my soul. He guides me along the right paths for his name's sake. Even though I walk through the darkest valley, I will fear no evil for you are with me, your rod and your staff. They comfort me. You prepare a table before me in the presence of my enemies. You anoint my head with oil, my cup overflows.
07:06 Surely your goodness and love will follow me all the days of my life. And I will dwell in the house of the Lord forever. Amen.