A Better Vocabulary and Praise – Reflection on Psalm 47

Psalm 47:1-9

A Better Vocabulary

I have a tendency to describe people, places, and things as awesome. Actually, most things are not awesome. The psalmist reminds me that God is awesome. Everything else pales in comparison.

I’m trying to find new language. God is awesome, everything else can be great, fantastic, wonderful, or stupendous. Looking up the word awesome in the thesaurus gives me even more options. There are other words than awesome. The psalmist causes me to pause and reflect that God may be the only One who should be described as awesome.

God Really IS Awesome

The psalmist gives evidence of God’s awesomeness by recounting how he has subdued the nations. Israel’s success was not because of their might or strength, but by the hand of their God.

The psalmist calls me to praise God. He says to praise with claps. Praise with shouts. Praise with singing. In verses 6 and 7, he calls us to sing five times! Verse six sounds like a chorus we could sing in our churches today; sing praises to God, sing praises, sing praises to our king, sing praises.

Responding to Awesomeness

As I reflect on the psalmist’s call, I am humbled. While I agree that God is awesome, I’m not sure my life, or praise of God reflects his awesomeness. I do sing to him, at least on Sundays, during worship. Sometimes I worship outside of Sunday mornings, but usually subdued. I don’t usually clap my hands, or shout for joy.

Do my actions give away my true heart? Do I see, like the psalmist, the awesomeness of God? Or do I forget? Do my circumstances, my trials, my cares and concerns coalesce causing me to forget that my God, the God that has chosen me, loved me, redeemed me, and continues to pursue me, is awesome. Do I forget that he, the Awesome One subdues all of my sin, all of my pain, and all of my brokenness.

Sing praises…sing praises…sing praises.

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