A devotion of Psalm 100.
1 Make a joyful shout to the Lord, all you lands!
The command for our business of the day is to make a joyful shout to the Lord. No matter what you’re going through, your first order of business is to make a joyful shout. He has been commanding us this for the last few days.
There was a man named Naaman, commander of the army of the king of Aram. He had leprosy. With much pomp, he went to see Elisha, a Israelite prophet renowned as a healer. Elisha told him to bath in the Jordan river seven times and he would be healed. Friend, look at this river. It’s an actual photo of the Jordan. Does it invite you to take off your clothes and jump in? Your sentiments might echo Naaman’s.
“But Naaman went away angry and said, “I thought that he would surely come out to me and stand and call on the name of the Lord his God, wave his hand over the spot and cure me of my leprosy. Are not Abana and Pharpar, the rivers of Damascus, better than all the waters of Israel? Couldn’t I wash in them and be cleansed?” So he turned and went off in a rage,” 2 Kings 5:11, 12.
A lot of us are going through a hard time. Many are asking for prayer to overcome a spirit of heaviness that hangs over the land as anxiety, depression, and incredible stress from one source or another takes its toll. God claims to have a cure – go bathe in the Jordan river of joyful song.
You might read that and think, “Clearly you don’t understand, Hannah. If you knew how I was feeling, you’d have a more complex and reasonable answer for me.” So you read your devotion for the day, maybe hit like, and check it off the to-do list, no less unburdened than when we first arrived.
We want to see a doctor and get a prescription. We want to sit in counselling for a year. We want to sit and commiserate with someone who understands. We want a procedure. We want the pastor to come out and pray over us. We want to change jobs. We want to find a spouse; or find another spouse. We want our children to stop carousing. These cures are clinically proven with efficacy studies.
“Are not Abana and Pharpar, the rivers of Damascus, better than all the waters of Israel? Couldn’t I wash in them and be cleansed?” Now there’s a river that invites me to jump in and swim!
How are the Abana and Pharpar rivers working for you? We have the best beds and the softest sheets on earth but we can’t sleep. We have the most comfortable cars, and shoes, and ergonomic seats at work yet have the most back pain. We have the best doctors and hospitals and consume the most drugs but we are the sickest. We have the most money and the greatest resources but we are ailing.
2 Serve the Lord with gladness; Come before His presence with singing.
Naaman’s servants went to him and said, “My father, if the prophet had told you to do some great thing, would you not have done it? How much more, then, when he tells you, ‘Wash and be cleansed’!” So he went down and dipped himself in the Jordan seven times, as the man of God had told him, and his flesh was restored and became clean like that of a young boy,” 2 Kings 3:13-14.
Beloved, I have a PhD in Christian counselling and I do not understand God! I don’t understand his ways and I do not understand his workings. What I do know is that he is God and I am not.
In our scientific brilliance and thinking, his ways seem ridiculous. But friends, they work. They work! Do you want to be restored? Try the prescription of joyful singing twice every hour for the next week and then come back and tell me you don’t feel better. We may need to adjust the dose (see the scale at the bottom of this post to determine dosing.)
Note that he doesn’t say listen to a song or have Christian music playing in the background. He says you sing. You make music. Now make it joyful music. Now shout it. I beg you to try it.
3 Know that the Lord, He is God; It is He who has made us, and not we ourselves;
We are His people and the sheep of His pasture.
I thank God for all the amazing technological advances made in science. But science didn’t make you. Medicine didn’t make you. Psychology didn’t make you. Chemistry didn’t make you. God, who is all those sciences, did. The creator of your amazing brain knows the power of music to release serotonin and endorphins and dopamine. He knows that music induces movement. He knows that music is Cognitive Behavioral Therapy to replace your dismal thoughts with delightful, praise and gratitude-filled ones. He is God. He made us. He knows.
4 Enter into His gates with thanksgiving and into His courts with praise.
Be thankful to Him and bless His name.
Allow me to be your servant Naaman and lend me your ear. I beg you to try this cure for your leprosy.
“Let the word of Christ richly dwell within you as you teach and admonish one another with all wisdom, and as you sing psalms, hymns, and spiritual songs with gratitude in your hearts to God.” Colossians 3:16.
“He tells us we are to be “speaking to one another with psalms, hymns, and songs from the Spirit. Sing and make music from your heart to the Lord,” Eph. 5:19.
“But giving thanks is a sacrifice that truly honors me. If you keep to my path, I will reveal to you the salvation of God.” Ps. 50:23.
5 For the Lord is good; His mercy is everlasting,
And His truth endures to all generations.
This is my story. This is my song. All I know is it works.
“About midnight Paul and Silas were praying and singing hymns to God, and the other prisoners were listening to them, suddenly there was a great earthquake, so that the foundations of the prison were shaken; and immediately all the doors were opened and everyone’s chains were loosed.” Acts 16:25, 26.
Please post your favorite hymn or song. Would you share one you have composed? We’d love to hear it and even sing it with you.
How is your singing measuring on the Richter scale?
|Richter Magnitudes||Description||Earthquake Effects||Frequency of Occurrence|
|Less than 2.0||Micro||Microearthquakes, not felt.||About 8,000 per day|
|2.0-2.9||Minor||Generally not felt, but recorded.||About 1,000 per day|
|3.0-3.9||Minor||Often felt, but rarely causes damage.||49,000 per year (est.)|
|4.0-4.9||Light||Noticeable shaking of indoor items, rattling noises. Significant damage unlikely.||6,200 per year (est.)|
|5.0-5.9||Moderate||Can cause major damage to poorly constructed buildings over small regions. At most slight damage to well-designed buildings.||800 per year|
|6.0-6.9||Strong||Can be destructive in areas up to about 160 kilometres (100 mi) across in populated areas.||120 per year|
|7.0-7.9||Major||Can cause serious damage over larger areas.||18 per year|
|8.0-8.9||Great||Can cause serious damage in areas several hundred miles across.||1 per year|
|9.0-9.9||Great||Devastating in areas several thousand miles across.||1 per 20 years|
|10.0+||Epic||Never recorded; see below for equivalent seismic energy yield.||Extremely rare (Unknown)|
(Based on U.S. Geological Survey documents.)