This week’s Summer in the Psalms memory verse is Psalm 34:18. David wrote these words, and boy do we need them:
“The LORD is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.”
I used to think that suffering was a small part of what we would experience in this life. But the older I get and the more I know Jesus and His people, the more I understand that pain is the rule more than the exception.
Verses like Psalm 34:18 aren’t just for the hard days. We need this promise every day, don’t we?
My friend Joy once told me something like, “Everyone is always wading through the mud, but some people have longer legs.”
Maybe part of growing in Christ is learning that my ultimate peace isn’t tied to whether or not I have reason to suffer, but whether or not I know that God is near.
If you haven’t noticed this in your reading so far, spend some time thinking about the way the Psalms equate joy and peace and hope not with the end of suffering but with the presence of God.
“in your presence there is fullness of joy” Psalm 16:11
“You make him glad with the joy of your presence” Psalm 21:6
“Be not far from me, for trouble is near” Psalm 22:11
“I will fear no evil, for you are with me” Psalm 23:4
The Lord is near to you today.
So, memorize these precious words this week, friends. Hang them on your refrigerator and prop them on your dashboard and cross-stitch them on your pillows and sing them with your children.
Write them on your heart.
“The Lord is near to the brokenhearted and saves the crushed in spirit.”