Christian Imagination Study – The Psalms and Authenticity

Tonight in our small group we began by reading Psalms for worship. Simply put, our worship time was a poetry reading.

There’s a lot of poetry in the Bible, and David wrote a good portion of it. David, a boy who didn’t have the look of a king, even to Samuel, but he had a heart, a heart for God. And what was his inroad to King Saul? He was a good musician. Later, we hear about David dancing. And we know that he was a poet, a songwriter. And a king, but perhaps not the leader people expect, even now. David wrote a lot of great poetry of praise and thanksgiving, but mostly, he lamenting, he complained, he poured out his heart honestly before God. I commented on Psalm 22 a few weeks ago. Take a look at Psalm 88. It is a lament almost despairing in tone, with no resolution.

It is okay to doubt God? Be mad at God? Is it okay to express words like ‘Why have you forsaken me?’ to God? Often, the answer seems to be no. We avoid saying things that imply doubt, and we pretend. We make ourselves believe, even when we really don’t, even when our life shows our lack of faith, we may still have trouble being honest. Yet, David is brutally honest. And in being honest, emotionally and intellectually, he is able to get it out of his system, to connect with God, and ultimately, to move towards God.