Psalm 21

1 The king rejoices in your strength, Lord. How great is his joy in the victories you give!

2 You have granted him his heart’s desire and have not withheld the request of his lips. 3 You came to greet him with rich blessings and placed a crown of pure gold on his head. 4 He asked you for life, and you gave it to him – length of days, for ever and ever. 5 Through the victories you gave, his glory is great; you have bestowed on him splendour and majesty. 6 Surely you have granted him unending blessings and made him glad with the joy of your presence. 7 For the king trusts in the Lord; through the unfailing love of the Most High he will not be shaken.

8 Your hand will lay hold on all your enemies; your right hand will seize your foes. 9 When you appear for battle, you will burn them up as in a blazing furnace. The Lord will swallow them up in his wrath, and his fire will consume them. 10 You will destroy their descendants from the earth, their posterity from mankind. 11 Though they plot evil against you and devise wicked schemes, they cannot succeed. 12 You will make them turn their backs when you aim at them with drawn bow.

13 Be exalted in your strength, Lord; we will sing and praise your might.

We know this psalm to be one of David’s but the surtitle doesn’t give us any more information as to when it was written and in what context. I would love to know what had just occurred to inspire such words! Had he won a great victory? Was he celebrating the birth of a son? Was life just generally good? 

How often in my life can I say that God has given me my heart’s desire, that he has answered my requests, that I am richly blessed, crowned with metaphorical gold, victorious over my circumstances? Probably more than I do… We are so predisposed to look at the negative – the things we lack – that we miss God’s constant hand of blessing in the thousands of tiny things every day.

Questions for thought and discussion...

  • Take a few minutes to list 10 specific things you can be thankful for. Steer away from the general like ‘food’, ‘family’ and really zoom in on those blessings.
  • How can we help our young people to recalibrate their thoughts in a positive direction?

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