Verse and Prayer for Friday 31 July – Mark Hawkes

Psalm 68 vv19-20: “Praise the Lord, who carries our burdens day after day; he is the God who saves us. Our God is a God who saves; He is the Lord, our Lord, who rescues us from death.”

Okay, so this is fairly standard Psalms’ language. It may even seem a bit too familiar? My reason for highlighting it is the tense. It comes in the middle of a psalm headed “A National Song of Triumph”. It is all about thanksgiving and celebration for what has happened at God’s hand. The righteous are glad because God has done this and that. Our two verses are in the present tense. God has done great things, and it will always be good to rejoice for that reason. Yet, God does this on a daily, ongoing basis. It is in His nature to go on acting on our behalf, and not stopping.

Firstly, God carries our burdens (physical, financial, personal). Amen. He does that, and is ever willing to do that, because of who He is. So, why am I still carrying them myself? I had a good conversation with a Christian friend a few weeks back (we’d been talking about prayer!) about how good it was to simply focus on God, rather than the need or care. Let Him carry them! Secondly, He is the God who saves us. So good, he says it twice! I’ve not been threatened with death recently, if ever, but the point is there is no limit to his saving power, except any that I have put there.

Father, please enable me to focus completely on you, rather than what is bothering me. I ask you to carry these burdens…and I thank you for doing so. Remind me of your help and power in a real, tangible way. Amen.

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