“ Bless our God, O peoples, let the sound of his praise be heard, who has kept us among the living, and has not let our feet slip.” (Psalm 66:8 – 9)
Last week I directed and dedicated the psalm passage to my fellow chronic illness sufferers. I was reminded of that by this first verse, although some in our group have passed away because of this disease.
“For you, O God, have tested us; you have tried us as silver is tried.” (Verse 10)
Admittedly, however, these verses are directed more at sin and trying to live a life according to Christian principles. This disease is not from anything we have done that is against Christian precepts. Very very diseases are.
“You brought us into the net; you laid burdens on our backs; you let people ride over our heads; we went through fire and through water; yet you have brought us out to a spacious place.” (Verse 11 – 12)
And healing from diseases is not dependent on living out Christian principles either. That is, sinners as well as saints recover from disease or succumb to the devastation of body and health. So let us leave behind health considers, and look together at what this passage has to say.
“I will come into your house with burnt offerings; I will pay you my vows, those that my lips uttered and my mouth promised when I was in trouble.” (Verse 13 – 14)
In times of trouble, we promise the Divine if we are delivered from our problems we will be more dedicated to the religious life and will turn away from habits and patters that are contrary to the Lord’s directions and guidance. The psalmist here promises now that things are better, the psalmist will follow through on these promises. And actually, by living a more authentic Christian life there will be far less danger of bringing problems upon ourselves.
“I will offer to you burnt offerings of fatlings, with the smoke of the sacrifice of rams; I will make an offering of bulls and goats. Selah” (Verse 15)
When the Lord has delivered us from our woes and worries, our faults and failings, our straying and distress, we seek to honor the God who stood by us and walked us through it. Ways and traditions of honoring and giving thanks to God have evolved and changed. But the impulse is still there.
“Come and hear, all you who fear God, and I will tell what he has done for me. I cried aloud to him, and he was extolled with my tongue. If I had cherished iniquity in my heart, the Lord would not have listened. But truly God has listened; he has given heed to the words of my prayer. Blessed be God, because he has not rejected my prayer or removed his steadfast love from me.” (Verses 16 – 20)
Blessed be God! Selah!