This is a sermon on Psalm 63.
Greetings to you this morning in the name of our great God, the God who satisfies our deepest longings and our thirst for his divine presence. Our text today is Psalm 63 in its entirety—a beautiful song of which someone has said, “there may be other psalms that equal this outpouring of devotion; few if any that surpass it.” Let us give careful attention to the reading of God’s word as we read the sixty-third psalm. [Read Psalm 63:1-11]
[Pre-Sermon Prayer] Shall we pray…O God, you are our God, and we gather today as your people—a people who you have created by the work of your Spirit to seek your face. O God of steadfast love, teach us now how we ought to long for you, and grant us by your free grace the earnest desire of the psalmist—to behold your power and glory. We pray for blessing and understanding through Christ the Savior’s name, Amen.
Perhaps the most intense period of spiritual trial I’ve had to date was during a 47-day trek across America the summer after college graduation and before starting my first real job. I traveled from Virginia to California and back again with two friends. It was supposed to be sort of an extreme outdoors vacation, and I planned to record my thoughts and prayers in a travelogue. Little did I know that physical, emotional, and spiritual trials would soon follow. Knowing that my carefree college years were over, and with a job start date looming on the horizon, this transitional time became an occasion for me to search for God, to find his power and glory revealed in creation, and a glimpse of his love in the wilderness. In a word, I was longing for an adventure with God. But like others who go searching for the divine, I didn’t find him in the way I expected.
Have you ever longed for God? I don’t just mean a desire for God, but have you ever deeply hungered and thirsted for God like David recorded in this psalm? There are many possible ways people could answer such a question. The Bible teaches that the way to be blessed is to long, to yearn, and to crave for God with all that is within us. Psalm 63 is a great text that can teach us this lesson: what it means to long for God today, what longing for God looks like, and how we can know this longing ourselves.
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