I doubt that I am alone in feeling the need for some good news or some reminders of positive, hopeful aspects of life in this world. It is time to pay attention to Psalm 145, part of which is the responsorial psalm used at Mass today. Instead of just breezing through it, let us take a thoughtful look at what the psalm tells us about the Lord and what that means for us.
One of the purposes of prayer is to adore God. Psalm 145 gives us words we don’t use in ordinary conversation to help us praise the Lord—extol, declare, proclaim, bless, laud. It is almost as if we enter into a different mindset that is holy and prayerful.
We address God as “King” and “Lord.” We say we will bless and praise his name forever—not just today or when we are in church. He is in our lives, present to us, available to us always. There is no way we can fully comprehend the Lord’s greatness, but that is not discouraging; it is comforting, because we all know we have only human abilities. God knows our limitations and loves us as he created us.
The psalm tells us that we have good news of a wonderful God to pass on to other generations. And we have this news on which to meditate and about which we can burst into song. So we should not keep all this happiness a secret; we need to share it often and willingly! The generations of believers shall
celebrate the fame of your abundant goodness,
and shall sing aloud of your righteousness. (verse 7)
What a marvelous heritage! The psalm lists so many of God’s attributes! He is gracious, merciful, compassionate, good, righteous, slow to anger, loving, powerful, faithful, generous, just, available to those who call, attentive, and kind. Imagine if we could imitate our God in those attributes, at least to some degree! We certainly can try, over and over again.
The psalm reminds us to be thankful:
All your works shall give thanks to you, O Lord,
and all your faithful shall bless you. (verse 10)
The psalm tells us about God’s kingdom. It is full of glorious splendor, majestic, and everlasting. In God’s kingdom, he will pick up the fallen and raise up those who are bowed down. His powerful hand is open to us.
The Lord is near to all who call on him,
to all who call on him in truth. (verse 18)
We have to know our place. We have to acknowledge God as above all and worthy of our love and obedience. We must love God and try to keep our priorities in right order. God watches over and saves us when we turn to him in love and truth. That is the good news I need every day! How about you?
I say Psalm 145 is a great starting point for prayer time—morning, noon or night!
Photo by Nathan Dumlao on Unsplash
Scripture passages are from the New Revised Standard Version Bible: Catholic Edition, copyright © 1989, 1993 the Division of Christian Education of the National Council of the Churches of Christ in the United States of America. Used by permission. All rights reserved.
Sharon Krause is a RENEW volunteer whose writing has appeared in several resources for small-group faith sharing. She is a wife, mother, and grandmother residing in Manchester, Connecticut. Over the years, she has served in many parish ministries.