Preparing for Worship: Psalm 48 & Spiritual Warfare

Preparing for Worship: Psalm 48 & Spiritual Warfare

John Haralson   •   June 9, 2016

“Full humanity is humanity united to God."

J. Todd Billings, Union with Christ: Reframing Theology & Ministry for the Church 


Dear Friends, 

A lot of families and schools use charts like this one to help young people grow in their emotional literacy. Far too many of us know what it’s like to not understand how to engage and enter into our emotional lives. This can have disastrous effects on our relationships, our jobs, and our general well being. From elementary schools to MBA programs, people are now beginning to realize the vital importance of emotional intelligence.

In many ways, the Psalms work in the Christian life like these emotion charts. The prayers and songs that make up the Psalms present to us life with God in all its fulness, with a particular emphasis on our emotions. There are Psalms of joy, lament, praise, thanksgiving, hope, and grief. John Calvin, the 16th-century theologian and Protestant reformer referred to the Psalms as an anatomy of the soul and further remarked:

there is not an emotion of which anyone can be conscious that is not [in the Psalms] represented as in a mirror.

God has given us this rich variety of prayers and songs to help us faithfully and authentically engage with him across the spectrum of our life circumstances. The Psalms help us truthfully name the various situations we find ourselves in so that we can experience God whether or not we’re having a good day, a heart-breaking day, or an incredibly average day.

This Sunday, we will be considering the experience of spiritual warfare. As a Presbyterian church, this is not something we talk a great deal about. However, it is something we all experience on a daily basis. 

My prayer for this week is that we find Psalm 48 to be a great help to us as we navigate through the difficult terrain of fighting significant spiritual battles throughout our lives.

This week: Spiritual Warfare, Psalm 48, Ephesians 6:10-20

Liturgy is here.

I hope to worship with you.

Warmly in Christ,

John

P.S. This Sunday we will begin our summer schedule. Worship at 9 am & 11 am with no Christian Formation Hour. We will also be having a brief congregational meeting at 10:30 am.