We go to Psalm 42 this time and contemplate the words of Psalter 116. The title of this Psalm, Remembrance of God, leads us to the truths expressed in this Psalm. We are to remember God as our strength at all times, but especially in times of despair. The first stanza of this Psalter speaks of the desperateness of a deer in search of refreshing water when being chased. are likened unto a deer when we search with longing soul for God. God sends His refreshing grace to us in answer to our request, and we are renewed.
Oh, how we long for the living God and His grace. We often hide ourselves from His presence by our sin. As the deer thirsts for water so are we thirsty for our Saviour and His grace. We wonder where our Lord has gone, often not realizing that we are responsible for having lost sight of our God. Then we know that we are not really lost when God shines His face on us again. God uses our sin to bring us to our knees in repentance and make us realize what a great gift grace is. Grief over our sins make us seek the Lord most high.
Why art thou restless and cast down my soul? The third stanza begins with the Psalmist questioning his own soul. His soul is cast down because of a lack of trust in God. We often become cast down in soul because we forget to put our trust in God. The plea of restlessness of the Psalmist is a plea that many of us have also made when we try to do things on our own. God is our aid in these difficult times and to Him we must turn, then our sighs will be turned to joy. This joy is a result of peace in our soul by the working of the Holy Spirit.
The Psalmist expresses disquiet of soul repeatedly in Psalm 42 where, in verse 7, he speaks of the waters billowing over him. The Psalmist then turns to the God that will never forsake him and will show His loving kindness day and night. When trials come upon him, the Psalmist speaks of the enemies taunting him by questioning where is his God. The Psalmist recognizes that these trials are sent him of God’s hand and become a strength to him. We also must trust in God when difficulties come our way. These trials are sent of God, and when we trust in Him we will be strengthened by them. We shall yet praise God who is our eternal spring of life. May we sing this Psalm and remember that God makes us to pant after Him to fill our thirsty souls. ❖