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By: Larry Shaffer
This mug shot is of my grandson Ryker. It was about 10 months ago. Moving to a new home, a new country and leaving his moma for the first day of kindergarten. Come back next time to see his pic on the last day of kindergarten this week.
In our general conversations with people, whether close family and friends or casual acquaintances, the flow of the conversation is usually two-sided. Otherwise, we get irritated. Sometimes we talk or meet someone and we walk away saying, ‘I couldn’t get a word in edgewise’. That’s a one-sided conversation in which a person only speaks about themselves or their experiences. But in most cases, our conversations are mutual in that we speak of our perspective and listen to the other’s perspective.
David writes Psalms that are two-sided. He will begin by telling God how he feels (usually distressed and hurting) and then He writes from God’s perspective to bring him back to the right place. I think of it as; ‘David takes himself low writing about himself and then brings himself back up by writing about God.’
Psalm 145 is different. It is completely one-sided. It is all about God!!! Praise and worship is not a conversation of mutual sharing. It is all about God. David writes 21 glorious verses about God: Who He is and what He has done! When I reflect, I have to admit, it is not natural for us to speak or write this way.
I will extol You, my God O King, and I will bless Your name forever and ever. Ever day I will bless You, and I will praise Your name forever and ever. Great is the Lord, and highly to be praised, and His greatness is unsearchable. One generation shall praise Your works to another, and shall declare Your might acts.
Men shall speak of the power of Your awesome acts, and I will tell of Your greatness. They shall eagerly utter the memory of Your abundant goodness and will shout joyfully of Your righteousness. 145:1-7
David exclaims Who He is by reciting His attributes: His greatness, splendor, goodness, righteousness, He is gracious and merciful, slow to anger, full of lovingkindness, powerful. Very moving. Great for meditating on who God is and then making it personal by considering who He is to me. It’s wonderful to consider God’s attributes both from the perspective that He is the God of the universe but He is also God to me. (There I go again; bringing myself into the conversation. You see, it’s difficult to truly focus solely on the greatest of God without bringing myself into my thoughts. Not that it’s wrong to consider God’s greatness toward me. I’m just making a point that is difficult for me to solely focus on God).
There is also an emphasis on His works and what He has done.
The Psalm ends with application of Gods greatness in our lives. In the spirit of keeping himself out of this Psalm, David doesn’t write this from a personal perspective about himself but writes of what God is doing in others. The Lord is near to all who call upon Him…He will fulfill the desire of those who fear Him…the Lord keeps all who love Him; He will also hear their cry and save them.”
Great is the Lord and highly to be praised! Holy Father, You alone deserve our focused, attentive and un-distracted praise and worship. The heavens declare Your glory continuously, the angels worship you ceaselessly, Your power to save us and sustain us is continual and constant. I ask you for the grace to be a true worshiper of Jesus, our Lord. May we, join all creation in honoring You will unselfish praise.
Great is the Lord and highly to be praised!