I can’t help but post on Psalm 144 which we prayed tonight at Vespers. I pray in Italian, which I find to be such a beautiful language of prayer, that I am afraid my English translation below really doesn’t do it justice.
My God, I will sing to you a new song, I will play for you on the ten-stringed harp; To you who give victory to your anointed, who frees David your servant.
Save me from the sword of iniquity, free me from the hand of the stranger. Their mouths speak lies and their right hand swears falsehood.
May our sons be as plants grown in their youth, our daughters like supporting columns in the construction of the temple.
May our granaries be full, overflowing of fruit of every kind; may our flocks be as myriads, and our fields as myriads more; may our oxen be weighed down with the harvest.
No breach, no incursion, no crying out in our city squares.
Blessed the people who possess these good things; blessed the people for whom God is the Lord!
Being from a farming background, I can relate to the joy of bringing in the harvest, with the wagons loaded down with grain, as the psalmist describes in this psalm. Being one who has heard an elder play joyful songs on musical instruments after the end of the day, I can resonate with the psalmist rejoicing on the ten-stringed harp. Being from a large family, I know the blessings of sons and daughters to a father and mother. Being one who, I believe, has experienced the power of the Spirit of God in my own life, I can identify with being saved from the sword of iniquity and lying deception.
The more one prays the psalms, the more one finds in them relevance to the here and now. Many find the psalms an archaic prayer form. I felt that way too for many years. But life’s experiences made me receptive to the messages of the psalms, for they speak to all of us today.