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Psalms for Ukraine

Songs of Hope in Times of War

Psalm 133: Unity

Psalm 133: Unity

What would it take for people today to co-exist in peace and harmony? I know a Russian pastor whose attempts to bring peace was one of the most moving things I’ve heard from Ukraine in recent months. At the start of the war he wrote a public letter to Ukrainian Christians to ask for forgiveness for his country’s actions, and wrote a moving account of meeting to pray with them, with many tears. He did so at risk of his life, and he and his family have now had to go...

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Psalm 132: Anticipation

Psalm 132: Anticipation

I remember not being able to sleep the night before our wedding. Partly, it was nerves; mostly, it was anticipation. The day we’d been planning for months was almost here, and there was so much to look forward to.  The Psalms of Ascents were a group of travellers’...

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Psalm 131: Contentment

Psalm 131: Contentment

Jason Robinson, the World Cup-winning English rugby player, once told of an experience of jealousy. He was flying high as the star player of his team, with success on the pitch and all the trappings of fame off it. But inwardly he was struggling, and was perplexed by...

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Psalm 130: Drowning

Psalm 130: Drowning

“You’ve only yourself to blame.” How I hated being told this as a kid! The worst bit, of course, was knowing it was probably true: I’d got myself into a jam, and it was one of my own making. How do we deal with our troubles when we know we’ve brought them on...

read more
Psalm 129: Patience in Oppression

Psalm 129: Patience in Oppression

We have a lot to learn from farmers. They are often associated with hardship, because their work can be back-breaking, and it never stops all year round. They’re also considered a picture of patience, having to wait for good weather - which is completely out of their...

read more
Psalm 128: Everyday Life

Psalm 128: Everyday Life

Where can we find happiness in our daily lives?  In 2019 Coldplay released a song called ‘Everyday Life’. In it, they lament the state of the world that we live in, and the pain that everyone goes through. In the opening line they cry out, ‘What in the world are...

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Psalm 127: Work

Psalm 127: Work

Here’s a song about work.  How do you feel about your work? We all have good and bad days at ‘the office’. It can make us feel alive one day, and overwhelm us the next. It can bring joy or despair. Maybe it makes you feel in control, or maybe it controls you. Maybe...

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Psalm 126: Dreaming of Better Days

Psalm 126: Dreaming of Better Days

Maybe life used to be good: full of laughter, joy, and the admiration of others. But now - perhaps due to life circumstances or ill health or the cruelty of others - that ‘blessing’ all feels like a distant memory. Have you ever felt like this? I know I have....

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Psalm 125: Surrounded

Psalm 125: Surrounded

How do you feel when you hear the word ‘surrounded’? Sadly, it may be more of a negative idea than a positive one, because too often our world is a place of threat, not safety. Even now, some people are forced to live in cities under siege. Maybe, due to mental health...

read more
Psalm 124: Danger & Safety

Psalm 124: Danger & Safety

It’s an interesting observation that in many wars, both sides are often quick to claim that God is with them. Why do we do this? Perhaps part of the answer is simply because there is great comfort in the thought that someone or something bigger than the situation,...

read more
Psalm 123: Contempt

Psalm 123: Contempt

This Psalm describes the unpleasant experience of a person of low position (v2) receiving arrogant scorn and ridicule from others who look down on them (v3-4). They’ve had enough, and they cry out to God for help.  Contempt is a particularly bruising experience. If...

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Psalm 122: Hope

Psalm 122: Hope

One interesting outcome of the COVID-19 pandemic was the resurgence in 2020 of the word ‘hope’. It was everywhere: shop windows, newspapers, social media. My favourite was driving past a bus stop and seeing the words ‘THERE IS HOPE’ in large print; as I got closer I...

read more
Psalm 132: Anticipation

Psalm 132: Anticipation

I remember not being able to sleep the night before our wedding. Partly, it was nerves; mostly, it was anticipation. The day we’d been planning for months was almost here, and there was so much to look forward to.  The Psalms of Ascents were a group of travellers’...

read more
Psalm 131: Contentment

Psalm 131: Contentment

Jason Robinson, the World Cup-winning English rugby player, once told of an experience of jealousy. He was flying high as the star player of his team, with success on the pitch and all the trappings of fame off it. But inwardly he was struggling, and was perplexed by...

read more
Psalm 130: Drowning

Psalm 130: Drowning

“You’ve only yourself to blame.” How I hated being told this as a kid! The worst bit, of course, was knowing it was probably true: I’d got myself into a jam, and it was one of my own making. How do we deal with our troubles when we know we’ve brought them on...

read more
Psalm 129: Patience in Oppression

Psalm 129: Patience in Oppression

We have a lot to learn from farmers. They are often associated with hardship, because their work can be back-breaking, and it never stops all year round. They’re also considered a picture of patience, having to wait for good weather - which is completely out of their...

read more
Psalm 128: Everyday Life

Psalm 128: Everyday Life

Where can we find happiness in our daily lives?  In 2019 Coldplay released a song called ‘Everyday Life’. In it, they lament the state of the world that we live in, and the pain that everyone goes through. In the opening line they cry out, ‘What in the world are...

read more
Psalm 127: Work

Psalm 127: Work

Here’s a song about work.  How do you feel about your work? We all have good and bad days at ‘the office’. It can make us feel alive one day, and overwhelm us the next. It can bring joy or despair. Maybe it makes you feel in control, or maybe it controls you. Maybe...

read more
Psalm 126: Dreaming of Better Days

Psalm 126: Dreaming of Better Days

Maybe life used to be good: full of laughter, joy, and the admiration of others. But now - perhaps due to life circumstances or ill health or the cruelty of others - that ‘blessing’ all feels like a distant memory. Have you ever felt like this? I know I have....

read more
Psalm 125: Surrounded

Psalm 125: Surrounded

How do you feel when you hear the word ‘surrounded’? Sadly, it may be more of a negative idea than a positive one, because too often our world is a place of threat, not safety. Even now, some people are forced to live in cities under siege. Maybe, due to mental health...

read more
Psalm 124: Danger & Safety

Psalm 124: Danger & Safety

It’s an interesting observation that in many wars, both sides are often quick to claim that God is with them. Why do we do this? Perhaps part of the answer is simply because there is great comfort in the thought that someone or something bigger than the situation,...

read more
Psalm 123: Contempt

Psalm 123: Contempt

This Psalm describes the unpleasant experience of a person of low position (v2) receiving arrogant scorn and ridicule from others who look down on them (v3-4). They’ve had enough, and they cry out to God for help.  Contempt is a particularly bruising experience. If...

read more
Psalm 122: Hope

Psalm 122: Hope

One interesting outcome of the COVID-19 pandemic was the resurgence in 2020 of the word ‘hope’. It was everywhere: shop windows, newspapers, social media. My favourite was driving past a bus stop and seeing the words ‘THERE IS HOPE’ in large print; as I got closer I...

read more
Psalm 121: God Watches Over You

Psalm 121: God Watches Over You

When we are afraid of the threats that surround us, where do we turn to for help? This traveller’s song begins with fear. As the pilgrims travelled to ancient Jerusalem, they looked to the mountains surrounding them and wondered where their help would come from (v1)....

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