February 4
A recital of experiences
For reading & meditation: 1 Corinthians 10:1-13
"No temptation has seized you except what is common to man." (v.13)

Having spent the past days identifying the nature of the problem which almost caused the psalmist to give up, we pause today to focus on another great value of the book of Psalms - the fact that it presents its teaching in the form of a recital of experiences. We have exactly the same kind of teaching in the New Testament, but there it is presented in a more directive fashion. Sometimes our hearts grow weary under the stresses of life and we are not open to receiving direct instruction from anyone. I remember when I was a young Christian going to church one evening feeling tired and worn down by the strong temptations I was experiencing. As the visiting preacher announced the title of his sermon - "Fifteen Principles for Overcoming Temptation" - I felt my heart sink within me. His sermon might have been what I needed but at that moment I was too weary to concentrate on principles. When I got home that evening I turned to the book of Psalms, and as I read the experiences of some of those men and found that they too had been through what I was going through, my strength returned and my spirit revived. This is why the book of Psalms is one of the most important and valuable books of the Bible. Learn to turn to it whenever you feel battered and beaten by the waves of life. You will find, as millions have found before you, that it speaks to your condition because the men who wrote it have been in your condition.
 
O Father, I am grateful to You beyond words for giving me that part of Your Word that reaches me when perhaps nothing else might reach me. Help me to make good use of it and avail myself of its unfailing resources. In Jesus' Name. Amen.
 
For further study:
1. What is God's Word like?
2. What did Paul pray for the Ephesians?