Psalm 16

Keep me safe, O God, for I have come to you for refuge. I said to the Lord, “You are my Master! Every good thing I have comes from you.” The godly people in the land are my true heroes! I take pleasure in them! Troubles multiply for those who chase after other gods. I will not take part in their sacrifices of blood or even speak the names of their gods. Lord, you alone are my inheritance, my cup of blessing. You guard all that is mine. The land you have given me is a pleasant land. What a wonderful inheritance! I will bless the Lord who guides me; even at night my heart instructs me. I know the Lord is always with me. I will not be shaken, for he is right beside me. No wonder my heart is glad, and I rejoice. My body rests in safety. 10 For you will not leave my soul among the dead or allow your holy one to rot in the grave. 11 You will show me the way of life, granting me the joy of your presence and the pleasures of living with you forever.

Much of David’s life saw him in tricky situations – some of them of his own making, some down to the sin of others. This Psalm seems to be set against such a backdrop – he starts by asking God for refuge. However, in this Psalm, he chooses not dwell on the things that are going wrong and coming against him, but rather on the goodness and faithfulness of God. 

There was a period on Facebook where everyone was doing 3 positive things for 7 days status updates. I may have had a slight ‘discussion’ with someone who objected to it and said that people who were struggling with life didn’t want to read stuff like this and certainly weren’t going to join in with it. 

My view is a little different: I certainly don’t think it’s easy in the midst of pain and suffering to give thanks and celebrate God’s goodness but I do think it’s necessary in so many ways and it’s absolutely what we are called to…

Questions for thought and discussion…

  • Can you write your own Psalm of thanksgiving and recognition of God’s goodness? Use this one as a template.
  • What activities can you devise you help your group of young people to be thankful and celebrate God’s goodness?

Jenny Cheung

Jenny is the Independent Schools’ Worker in west & central Scotland. She’s also a mum of three and has a passion for the gym and the community choir she directs (the last two are not related!).