Day 11

Asking God for Restoration

from the Amen & Amen reading plan

Psalm 79:1-13, Psalm 80:1-19, Psalm 81:1-16, Psalm 82:1-8

BY Rebecca Faires

Book III
While Book III contains threads of hope, it is often labeled as the “dark” book of the Psalter because of its focus on lament.

I love the singing of psalms. I am not a great singer, but I am a very loud singer. I was once in a Joseph and the Amazing Technicolor Dreamcoat performance, just absolutely yowling gloriously at the top of my lungs. The director later lovingly encouraged me to moderate my joyful noises. But I think if we’re going to make some noise, we should do it with enthusiasm, and maybe…“play the tambourine” (Psalm 81:2). 

Some of us are inclined to make a lot of noise, come rain or shine. My husband is more inclined to think, consider, and hold his tongue. Maybe you are more like that. But psalm singing is something everyone can get behind. There are so many kinds of psalms! There’s a psalm for every emotion.

The Psalms teach us to sing to the Lord on all occasions. It comes pretty easily to sing to Him on wedding days, over the births of new babies, and every Sunday when we gather to worship. But we also sing to Him at funerals, and when the world seems to be ending, and when the floodwaters rise. No matter our circumstances, we can always “Lift up a song” (v.2).

This section of Psalms is about a period of desolation and captivity for Israel. When reading it in times of peace, scholar Matthew Henry suggests we “bless God that we are not thus trampled on and insulted.” Amen. But these psalms are particularly appropriate when we are in hard times ourselves, to teach us where we look for help and encouragement for the Church.

Singing to God in hard times is good for the Church. It underscores our confidence in God’s providence in all circumstances, teaches our hearts to hope continually, and puts scripture in our mouths when words fail us. “Sing for joy to God our strength; shout in triumph to the God of Jacob” (v.1) No matter what is going on in the world, the Church can sing for joy and shout in triumph over the finished work of Christ.

Like the Israelites, when things look bleak, we are continually called to praise the Lord. We praise Him in all circumstances. In our pain, we cry out to Him, “Restore us, God; make your face shine on us, so that we may be saved” (Psalm 80:3). Don’t waste the days of your suffering. These are the days you are most awake to the need of your Savior. Sing His praises when you are in the darkest places.

He is faithful. He was faithful to His people in Israel when these psalms were written. They were not in captivity and desolation forever. He is faithful to His Church today. His face shines on us, even when we are too grieved to notice. 

Cry out to Him and sing to Him whether you are having the best or the worst day of your life. And, if you like, do it loudly, and throw in a tambourine!

Post Comments (53)

53 thoughts on "Asking God for Restoration"

  1. Sierra May says:

    Sing His praises when you are in the darkest places!!! Thank you Lord for the sweet words of wisdom!!!

  2. ammanda elliott says:

    “In the morning, in the evening
    In your coming, and your going
    In your weeping, and rejoicing
    He is for you, He is for you”

  3. Miri am says:

    I remember a particularly dark time in my life where all I could sing was “it is well with my soul”. A hymn written by a man in a time of utter loss and despair and yet he found a way to praise!

  4. Robert Stead says:

    Thank you for your sweet words of wisdom ❤️. I am a bit behind But God has me right where I needed to be today. My sweet college daughter has been struggling as she has started her last year. We have both been reading the Psalms. She has the book and I am on the app. We have been proclaiming “mercies are new every day” for a week and your song recommendation of Good Morning, Mercy has been a salve for us today!! We will be singing this for weeks!!!! Thank Dear Sister for helping this mama help another young woman meet Our Heavenly Father with song❤️❤️

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