Our lives to do not have to be driven by productivity to be meaningful.
Click on the link for the Psalm above (my links show up as red words) or find it in your favorite Bible or digital Bible or listen to Psalm :
Bonus: The Lord’s Prayer is about the amount of time you need for hand scrubbing 😉
Breath Prayer: I am including breath prayers because this is the practice that I engage in most often. Sometimes, I simply manage my breathing as I would when I was singing as a warmup and strengthening exercise. This practice helps me to feel centered, strong, and connected with myself and the divine. Sometimes, I add words or intentions for the inhalation and exhalation.
Sometimes we loose sight of who is really in control and end up working ourselves into exhaustion. This tired stupor is not really rest. True rest means acknowledging that the world will turn without our spinning efforts. Certainly the God who created the heavens and the earth does not need me to make sure the world is turning. Taking time to rest (or taking a Sabbath) means that we are letting go of the to-do list. Rest is really a stop in work and in worry. Rest gives us permission to not be in charge of every detail or control every aspect of living. Rest allows us to let go and know that God is in charge for a while. We are not as self-sufficient as we pretend to be. We rely on God and on one another, to do good work, to worship, and to rest. And since its ok to rest, its ok to sing and make music for no other reason than to celebrate God and each other. Our lives to do not have to be driven by productivity to be meaningful. I encourage you to find time to rest and to celebrate.
Let us pray:
God fill me with your Holy spirit. I receive your rest and release my control. You can always pick different words for your breath prayer. But the idea of a breath prayer is to keep it simple so I encourage you to simply find one word for each inhale and one word for each exhale.
Ok, everyone take a deep breath. Breath in. Breath out. Breath in. Breath out. Repeat as needed.
Sources and notes:
“The central concern of the psalm is the contrast between the destiny of the wicked and that of the righteous.” Mays p. 299
“What the psalm does is to invite those who hear and sing it to extend this understand of the LORD’s work into the sphere of personal existence.” Mays p. 299
“Its title says it is the psalm for the Sabbath. Its selection for this day poses an interesting interpretive question about the reason for its choice. Was a reference to completed creation recognized in verses 4 and 9? Was it because the name of the LORD appears in the psalm seven times? Commenting on the title, the mishna Tamid (7:4) says, “It is a psalm and a song for the era to come, for the day that will be entirely Sabbath, for eternal life.” This rabbinical observation recognizes that creation will not be completed in the LORD’s victory over all enemies until the end of the age. Then there will be a final Sabbath rest for God and the righteous. The Sabbaths in time are a foretaste of this eschatological consummation. When the psalm is sung in this light, it brings the end time into the present and gives a marvelous interpretation of Sabbath worship and rest (Levenson, creation p. 123).” Mays p. 300
“From the perspective of Psalm 92, the irony is that the more sophisticated and self-suficient we think we are, the more stupid and insecure we actually are.” NIB p. 562
“As with Psalms 1-2; 37; 73; and many others, the eschatological affirmation of God’s rule challenges us to find our security in God rather than in ourselves, which suggests another dimension to Psalm 92 as a sabbath song.” NIB p. 563
“By their worship and by their work, the people of God proclaim that their lives and futures helton not to themselves but to God. Indeed, the content of this proclamation is the essence of being “righteous” … This message was liberations good news to ancient exiles, and it is still liberations good news to contemporary person captivated by themselves, alienated from God, and isolated from one another.” NIB p. 563
WBC Allen, Leslie C. 1983. Word Biblical Commentary: Psalms 101-150. Vol. 21. Waco, TX: Word Books, Publisher.
Bonhoeffer, Dietrich. 1974. Psalms: The Prayer Book of the Bible. 8th ed. Minneapolis, MN: Augsburg Press.
Brueggemann, Walter. 2007. Praying the Psalms: Engaging Scripture and the Life of the Spirit. 2nd ed. Eugene, OR: Cascade.
Brueggemann Brueggemann, Walter. 2014. From Whom No Secrets Are Hid: Introducing the Psalms. Edited by Brent A. Strawn. 1st ed. Louisville, KY: Westminster John Knox Press.
WBC Craigie, Peter C. 1983. Psalms 1-50–Word Biblical Commentary. Vol. 19. Waco, TX: Word Books.
Creach, Jerome Frederick Davis. 1998. Psalms: Interpretation Bible Studies. Louisville, KY: Westminster John Knox Press.
NIB Keck, Leander E. 2015. The New Interpreters Bible Commentary. Vol. 3. Nashville, TN: Abingdon Press.
Mays Mays, James Luther. 1994. Psalms. Louisville, KY: John Knox Press.
McCann, J. C., & Howell, J. C. 2001. Preaching the Psalms. Nashville, TN: Abingdon Press.
Miller Miller, Patrick D. 1986. Interpreting the Psalms. Philadelphia, PA: Fortress Press.
Spong Spong, M. (Ed.). (2020). The words of her mouth: Psalms for the struggle. Cleveland, OH: The Pilgrim Press.
WBC Tate, Marvin E. 1990. Word Biblical Commentary: Psalms 51-100. Edited by David Allan. Hubbard and Glenn W. Barker. Vol. 20. Waco, TX: Word.
OTL Weiser, Artur. 1998. Old Testament Library: Psalms. Translated by Herbert Hartwell. 3rd ed. New York, NY: Manchester University Press.
Other Year D Psalm blog posts:
I’m attempting a series exploring the Psalms in year D. Many churches use the revised common lectionary that rotates scripture on a three-year cycle (A, B, and C). Year D was created with the goal of including scriptures that were left out or not used as frequently as others.
I began this series in Lent 2020. These blog posts include examples of meditation or spiritual discipline or mindfulness exercises. Here are the links: Ash Wednesday: Psalm 102; 1st Sunday in Lent: Psalm 6; 2nd Sunday in Lent: Psalm 143; 3rd Sunday in Lent: Psalm 38; 4th Sunday in Lent: Psalm 39; 5th Sunday in Lent: Psalm 101; 6th Sunday in Lent Psalm 94 or Psalm 35. I went a different direction during Holy Week and dropped the Psalms for a while, but I’m hoping to pick them back up again.
I’m going to try to move forward with the Psalms so that it might be useful for worship in the coming weeks and hoping that I can also go back and pick up some of the ones I missed.
The Season of Easter: Resurrection of the Lord (Easter) Psalm 71:15-24 or Psalm 75 or Psalm 76, 2nd Sunday in Easter Psalm 64 or Psalm 119:73-96, 3rd Sunday in Easter Psalm 60 or 108, 4th Sunday in Easter Psalm 10, 5th Sunday in Easter Psalm 49: (1-12) 13-20, 6thSunday in Easter Psalm 129, Ascension Thursday Psalm 119:145-176, 7th Sunday in Easter Psalm 115, and Pentecost Sunday Psalm 119:113-136.
Then we move into “ordinary time” which is broken up into sections throughout the liturgical year. Remember that the year starts with Advent (I started this adventure in Lent) so some of the ordinary Sundays have already happened.
Trinity -Ordinary Time- Christ the King: Trinity Sunday Psalm 35, 9th Sunday in Ordinary time Psalm 142, 10th Sunday in Ordinary time Psalm 74, 11th Sunday Psalm 7, 12th Sunday Psalm 55, 13th Sunday Psalm 56, and 14th Sunday Psalm 57 or Psalm 3.
The Apocalyptic Discourse 15th -19th Sundays in Ordinary time: 15th Sunday Psalm 17:8-14(15) or Psalm 83, 16th Sunday Psalm 54, 17th Sunday Psalm 50 or Psalm 105, 18thSunday Psalm 59, and 19th Sunday Psalm 37.
The Passion of our Lord Jesus Christ 24th – 33rd Sundays in Ordinary time: 24th Sunday Psalm 92, 25th Sunday Psalm 25, 26th Sunday Psalm 136, 27th Sunday Psalm 41, 29th Sunday Psalm 38 or Psalm 55, 30th Sunday Psalm 33: (1-10) 13-22, 31st Sunday Psalm 31 or Psalm 40, 32nd Sunday Psalm 71:15-24, 33rd Sunday Psalm 77, Christ the King Psalm 87 and Psalm 117, and All Saints Day Psalm 107.