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Singing Psalm 119 you find your voice

Singing Psalm 119 you find God’s voice

The psalmist is in a quandary. He voices it to God weaving in words of faithfulness that he’s heard from God’s voice as his way out of it. He doesn’t throw up his hands although he doesn’t know what to do.

He models for you what it looks like to moment-by-moment have your eyes on the Lord for the answer to your suffering. 

Singing Psalm 119 connects you to his resolute dependence on God. It chips away at your heart of stone to break your independent introspection and simultaneous focus on what others are saying and doing that threaten to undo you.

Your resentment is replaced by a real and vulnerable heart of flesh.

Your loving, wise Father is restoring you from a crumbling concrete slab to become a moldable, teachable child of his, a responsive son or daughter of his. 

You walk humbly with him in a covenant relationship that you are trusting him, not yourself, completely to preserve. You tell him your concerns, fears, and complaints, lacing each one with what you have heard from his voice that answers them.

Singing Psalm 119 – before you can find your voice you must lose it

People will tell you that you find your voice by finding groups with which to ally yourself. You listen for others’ voices, and keying off of those, you find your own, they say. Those voices that resonate loudest give you an identity and therefore, a voice. 

Singing Psalm 119, you boldly move away from these other voices as listening for God‘s voice is often not considered in groups with which you might identify. The common denominator is usually a physical trait or an ideology. And so you either jump on or find yourself on one bandwagon or another leading you to lose your voice.

It was never really your voice at all, but a fabricated, affected, squeak pigeon-holed into a typecast, hellish vortex by those who wouldn’t mind making you into their image and then cast you aside when they find no further use for you.

You were made in his image. You find your voice not when you move away from the Father. You find your voice both now and ultimately when you are listening for his in the person and work of the Lord Jesus.

Singing Psalm 119 you find your voice

The psalmist never gives you the sense that God is disinterested in what he is going through or what is on his mind to tell the Lord. Because he is confident that the Lord is listening, that the Lord hears him, he can find his voice.

This gives you the precedence you need to assess yourself right where you are and determine when you are in a quandary that you can clearly lay before God. 

You don’t leave out one detail, depending on him alone to help you sort it all out in your mind and with others. As you sing, the Holy Spirit and the Word purify your heart, redirect your steps, relieve you of shame, and encourage you to wait or go and do what he has prepared in advance for you to do. 

You find your voice with your Father as you bring your every need on how to see, hear, taste, and touch. In your desires, you seek from him how to answer others trusting that the Lord will rearrange things right. 

You find your voice in your allegiance to your maker and keeper and are friends with all who do the same (v. 63).

You find your voice asking him to teach you recognizing that though the proud lie, God uses your suffering at their hands for good. You are learning to hold to God‘s paths that are humble and good rather than follow their proud ways. 

You find your voice, gentle and humble, undergirded with the thoughts and understanding that his hands created and established you. 

You find your voice as you express your need for the Lord to show you how to communicate with others about how to remain steadfast in suffering. You don’t acquiesce to their disapproval. Rather you give them an example of who to turn to when they suffer.

In seeking him, you find that he, your best friend, is seeking you! 

You find your voice as you ask questions coming to Jesus when you are weary, need rest and comfort, and wonder – how long? “When will you stop those who are bent on hurting me?”

You find your voice in thanksgiving as you find his promises setting your mind at ease. He instructs you in his Word by his Holy Spirit and he accepts the offering of your mouth (v. 108) that is filled with thanksgiving.

Singing Psalm 119 points the way for you to hear God‘s voice and in so doing find your voice in praise to him. 

When you love someone‘s words – each one! (v. 140), when that person invites you to share your fears, cry out in your pain, and promises to be with you and to rescue you, this is the closest of friendships. 

This is a love relationship of the highest order: full of patience, kindness, goodness, yielding, waiting for each other, gentle, humble, enduring, hopeful, always there for one another.

Except only one of the two of us does it perfectly (and it isn’t me) and even makes up for the failures of the other!

The communication is real, vulnerable. He knows not only because he knows all, but because you tell him. 

The love is deep, requited. There’s no shame, no hiding, only truth met with grace and mercy. There is no rejection, but an open door through which you walk to a rich welcome. This is covenant love, and although you do your best, he keeps both sides of the covenant.

That’s why the psalmist (and you, when you sing it) praises that one!

You find your voice when the one to whom you’re speaking knows exactly what you mean and even fills in for your uncertainties. 

He knows what to do with your words, your vulnerability, your silent thoughts directed toward him. Your hidden tears are not hidden to him. You know you are loved by this one. You hang on to his every word. They speak volumes of his steadfast love, his faithfulness, his loving kindness, and both his tender and severe mercies. 

You are beside yourself and can’t help but go on and on about him, gushing over his attentiveness to your true needs. As he makes himself known to you, you reciprocate. You find your voice, making yourself known to him.

You find your voice when you sing how he is your shield, your hiding place, your hope. In your conversation with the triune God, you are intimate, telling him of your love, your awe, and how his voice occupies your thoughts constantly (v. 117). 

Singing Psalm 119, you find your voice upon taking in his voice day after day on a long, long walk together. “My tongue will sing…True to your promise, rescue me. Be ready with your hand to help…Seek me, who like a sheep, has strayed.” (v. 169-176)

Psalm 119, therefore, is the greatest love song ever written, ever sung, as a chosen-though-fallen, responsive bride to her perfect-in-all-ways bridegroom. You find your voice singing Psalm 119 as a lover asks her bridegroom, “How do I love Thee? Let me count the ways.”

July 14-15, 2022

Indebted to David Powlison’s works, notably, his articles on suffering and Psalm 119 and Revisiting Idols of the Heart and Vanity Fair, and his book on God’s grace in your suffering 


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