Today in my quiet time I felt so refreshed as I read the powerful words of worship from Psalm 103 (here are verses 1-8, 11-14):
Bless the Lord, O my soul;
And all that is within me, bless His holy name!
Bless the Lord, O my soul,
And forget not all His benefits:
Who forgives all your iniquities,
Who heals all your diseases,
Who redeems your life from destruction,
Who crowns you with lovingkindness and tender mercies,
Who satisfies your mouth with good things,
So that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.
The Lord executes righteousness
And justice for all who are oppressed.
He made known His ways to Moses,
His acts to the children of Israel.
The Lord is merciful and gracious,
Slow to anger, and abounding in mercy.
For as the heavens are high above the earth,
So great is His mercy toward those who fear Him;
As far as the east is from the west,
So far has He removed our transgressions from us.
As a father pities his children,
So the Lord pities those who fear Him.
For He knows our frame;
He remembers that we are dust.
I love the idea of commanding myself, my very soul, to bless (or “praise” in the NIV) the Lord. I love this meditation on God’s character, including His compassion for us. And, as someone who has some tendency toward holding on to guilt and shame even though I know this is just a twisted form of pride, I absolutely love the verse that says, “He remembers that we are dust.” Praise God for His great compassion!