I like the way psalms say it all. “Rejoice in the Lord, you just!” one of the psalms says. No need to make a prayer up on your own or think hard about saying something to God the right way. Let the psalms help you pray. “Rejoice in the Lord, you just!”
“Let the earth rejoice in God, our king.” Why not join the earth praying? The “many isles are glad.” Be glad with them.
The psalms have a way of stilling our souls and calling them into the quiet grace of God’s presence. We think everything depends on us. No, it doesn’t. God “melts the mountains like wax” and “guards the lives of his faithful ones.” We think we have to know everything. No, we don’t. But God does.
We pray, not to know more and more, but to be drawn closer to God. The psalms feed our minds and hearts, little by little. Their special grace is their simplicity as they tell us, for example, “rest in God as a child in a mother’s arms.”
Most of the psalms in our liturgy are songs of praise. “Praise the Lord, for the Lord is good.” Other psalms cry for help. Just a cry is enough, they say. “I cry to the Lord that he may hear me.”
The psalms call us to a simple, deep prayer. Keep your eye on them in the liturgy of the Mass, Use them in your daily prayer. They’re wonderful basic prayers for everyone.
“Although the whole of Scripture breathes God’s grace upon us, this is especially true of that delightful book, the book of the psalms.” (St. Ambrose)
Every day the church meets the morning praying the psalms; every evening we end the day with these great prayers. A good way to pray always, as Jesus asks us to do.
the psalms do give me comfort, however I never thought to ask myself ,”Why?”. your explanation hit home because the repetition, and simple phrases offer a quick way to make an emotional connection with God. Instant gratification of a good kind!
I guess that is the special grace!
I’ve always loved the Psalms as ways to connect with the One who gives life to me and all creation. Some psalms speak of battles fought; wars won; enemies defeated and victory. Though not in actual combat myself, I still relate to the description of dependence on God in every aspect of life. Psalm 103,12-13 are a constant reminder of God’s unconditional love:
R. The Lord is kind and merciful.
As far as the east is from the west,
so far has he put our transgressions from us.
As a father has compassion on his children,
so the LORD has compassion on those who revere the Almighty.
Dear Father Victor, thank you for teaching us that there’s no need to reinvent the wheel. And thank you for giving me a renewed appreciation for the Psalms. Less is more, and the less we speak, the more the Psalms can speak to our hearts and express ourselves to God.
The psalms are mirrors of ourselves as well as paths to God.