The First Step: Repentance

Psalm 120:1-7

BY She Reads Truth

Scripture Reading: Psalm 120

The Christian life is a climb—a journey of constant growth, sacrifice, and trusting God for what we cannot see. As Eugene Peterson said, we are pilgrims, but we are also disciples—always moving and always learning. The Psalms of Ascent (Psalms 120-134) were sung by worshipers as they made the journey up to Jerusalem for the annual feasts. In this 3-week reading plan, we’ll dig into these traveling songs with the help of short summary essays and thoughtful, reflective questions for each psalm. Take your pack on your shoulder and walk with us as we pursue God together.


Psalm 120 (CSB)
A song of ascents.

1 In my distress I called to the LORD,
and he answered me.
2 “LORD, rescue me from lying lips
and a deceitful tongue.”

3 What will he give you,
and what will he do to you,
you deceitful tongue?
4 A warrior’s sharp arrows
with burning charcoal!

5 What misery that I have stayed in Meshech,
that I have lived among the tents of Kedar!
6 I have dwelt too long
with those who hate peace.
7 I am for peace; but when I speak,
they are for war.


A Leaving Song
The pilgrim-disciple laments her culture of dishonesty and hostility, and leaves for the holy city of Jerusalem. This song was sung with an eye toward the goal: worship on God’s holy hill. It is the song of a person who is stirred to leave a broken world in search of a place where peace reigns.

Dissatisfaction with the brokenness of our world is an essential component to a pilgrim’s journey. It stirs us to get up from where we are and seek a better way. We aren’t called simply to flee from the lies of our culture. We are called to flee to God.

1. Do you know any other leaving songs? What are they about? What do you want to be delivered from? What do you want to leave? Why?

2. The pilgrim-disciple prays to be delivered from lies. What are the lies that most often have your ear? Do you struggle to recognize the lies you are told? What lies do you tell to paint yourself in a better light? Why do you think we do this?

3. What does it mean to flee to God? In what ways do you practice, or in what ways can you begin to practice, fleeing to God?


Post Comments (280)

280 thoughts on "The First Step: Repentance"

  1. Tiffany Laviolette says:

    I’m struggling with the lies of my health issues making me feel worthless and worsening depression. I’m making the decision to turn to God instead of others because pleasing Him is what matters, not pleasing others.

  2. Charne October says:

    I chose to fleet from hopelessness and the need to strive to achieve everything … friendships, approval, acceptance.

  3. Kari Bachle says:

    Today is the last day of a job I love – a job I am losing due to COVID-19. And while I know this layoff has nothing to do with me & my performance, I find it is still so easy to buy into the lies that I’m not enough. At this job. As a single thirty-something longing to be married. If I listen to the lies long enough, I even begin to doubt my position as a child of God. But this is not where I want to live, this is not who I am…I am enough, & even more I am beloved by the God of the universe. Today at this end I am choosing to flee to God & trust that He still has me, that He sees & knows far more (& far better) than I do, & that’s not going to change anytime soon. I may grieve, but not as one without hope. For my hope is in the One who will never leave me or forsake me, today or ever.

  4. Nina says:

    Thank you Lord. I’m on my way! Keeping my eye on you LORD. If I get tired or weary you lift me up by the power that is greater than any power that pulls me down! Singing. I shall sing! Starting right now my song is coming back!

  5. Jen Brewer says:

    I’ve been working a lot on renewing my mind and taking thoughts captive to Christ in the past few months. I realize that I have let many lies grow in my mind regarding who I am as a mother or how/why my husband is acting the way he is. We live far away from family and I predominantly stay home with our toddler son and am 27 weeks pregnant with our daughter. My thoughts/emotions are my constant companions along with a toddler, especially now during this pandemic as we are staying home even more, me in particular since both my husband and I work in healthcare (though he is full time and I pick up shifts per diem/as needed). Thanks be to God for the unexpected gift of time in this season. My husband being home more for various reasons at different times to have more support, us being able to connect again, me being able to work on actively choosing which thoughts to dwell on and matching them up with the truth from scripture. Please Lord Jesus, keep renewing my mind to the truth of who You are and who I am as Your beloved. Help me to root our the lies and replace them with truth so my behaviors and relationship of can flourish from me recognizing the thoughts that are behind so many of my emotions.

  6. Rachel Thompson says:

    As I currently am living in Jerusalem during this pandemic I am using this devotional to remind me why am I here and to keep trusting in God despite all that is out of my control.

  7. Sue Maddeaux says:

    At the beginning of my Lenten journey let me leave behind my negative thoughts and cling to the Transcendent.

  8. Chloe Roberts says:

    Lord help me to leave the lies behind and flee to you!

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