It’s a good thing to sing praise to our God;
praise is beautiful, praise is fitting.
2-6 God’s the one who rebuilds Jerusalem,
who regathers Israel’s scattered exiles.
He heals the heartbroken
and bandages their wounds.
He counts the stars
and assigns each a name.
Our Lord is great, with limitless strength;
we’ll never comprehend what he knows and does.
God puts the fallen on their feet again
and pushes the wicked into the ditch.
7-11 Sing to God a thanksgiving hymn,
play music on your instruments to God,
Who fills the sky with clouds,
preparing rain for the earth,
Then turning the mountains green with grass,
feeding both cattle and crows.
He’s not impressed with horsepower;
the size of our muscles means little to him.
Those who fear God get God’s attention;
they can depend on his strength.
12-18 Jerusalem, worship God!
Zion, praise your God!
He made your city secure,
he blessed your children among you.
He keeps the peace at your borders,
he puts the best bread on your tables.
He launches his promises earthward—
how swift and sure they come!
He spreads snow like a white fleece,
he scatters frost like ashes,
He broadcasts hail like birdseed—
who can survive his winter?
Then he gives the command and it all melts;
he breathes on winter—suddenly it’s spring!
19-20 He speaks the same way to Jacob,
speaks words that work to Israel.
He never did this to the other nations;
they never heard such commands.
I can’t think of a better Psalm to finish off 2017 with than Psalm 147. One of the things that I hope, as a Christian, I always continue to grow in is a deeper understanding of the character of God. The more we draw near to Him, the more He will draw near to us (James 4:8). And I believe that this Psalm is incredibly helpful in getting to know the heart of God more.
These are a few of my favorite things about the heart of God that just Psalm 147 reveals to us:
- God is a healer & draws near to the broken. (“He heals the heartbroken and bandages their wounds.”
- God is sovereign. (“He counts the stars and assigns each a name. Our Lord is great, with limited strength; we’ll never comprehend what He knows and does.”)
- God is just. (God puts the fallen on their feet again and pushes the wicked into the ditch.”)
- God can be counted on. (“Those who fear God get God’s attention; they can depend on his strength.”)
- God’s standards are different than earthly standards. “He’s not impressed with horsepower; the size of our muscles means little to Him.”
- God is a provider who keeps the world going. “…Who fills the sky with clouds, preparing the rain for the earth, then turning the mountains green with grass, feeding both cattle and crows.”
My hope is that as we draw near to the end of 2017 and get closer each day to the beginning of 2018, you feel that this year, you have gotten to know the heart of God better. And while I’m more of a goal-setter than a resolution-maker, my hope is also that if you set one goal or make one resolution for 2018, it’s that you will finish of 2018 closer to the heart of God and with a deeper knowledge of Him than you had in 2017.