Tucked away in the biblical book of Psalms there are a half dozen songs that served a special purpose for God’s children. One commentator summarizes their use like this:
Psalms 113-118 are a small collection of Hallel-Psalms which were sued in Jewish worship, and had their place in the liturgy for the feasts of Pilgrimage, Passover, Weeks, and Tabernacles, as well as the New Moon, and the Feast of the Dedication of the Temple.
At the family Passover celebration Psalms 113 and 114 were sung before the meal and Psalms 115-118 afterward (Matthew 26:26, 30 and Mark 14:22, 26)
These songs were sung on some of the most important faith holidays for God’s children Israel. Let’s reflect on one song today:
Psalm 113 New Revised Standard Version (NRSV)
1 Praise the Lord!
Praise, O servants of the Lord;
praise the name of the Lord.
2 Blessed be the name of the Lord
from this time on and forevermore.
3 From the rising of the sun to its setting
the name of the Lord is to be praised.
4 The Lord is high above all nations,
and his glory above the heavens.
5 Who is like the Lord our God,
who is seated on high,
6 who looks far down
on the heavens and the earth?
7 He raises the poor from the dust,
and lifts the needy from the ash heap,
8 to make them sit with princes,
with the princes of his people.
9 He gives the barren woman a home,
making her the joyous mother of children.
Praise the Lord!
Why is the Lord worthy of our praise? First, because God is high and holy. And secondly, we praise this high and holy God for still caring for lowly and needy humans. We love, because He first loved us.
Thank you, Great God of the Universe, for caring for me. Your love does touch me, and because You have cared, I care in return. Help me now to share that type of love with all the people I encounter today. That will be my act of praise to You. Amen.