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Summary: how the Sons of Korah teach us how to deal with sorrow

March 10, 2002 Psalm 42-43 (quickview) 

For the director of music. A maskil of the Sons of Korah.

As the deer pants for streams of water, so my soul pants for you, O God. 2 My soul thirsts for God, for the living God. When can I go and meet with God? 3 My tears have been my food day and night, while men say to me all day long, Where is your God?" 4 These things I remember as I pour out my soul: how I used to go with the multitude, leading the procession to the house of God, with shouts of joy and thanksgiving among the festive throng. 5 Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God. My soul is downcast within me; therefore I will remember you from the land of the Jordan, the heights of Hermon—from Mount Mizar. 7 Deep calls to deep in the roar of your waterfalls; all your waves and breakers have swept over me. 8 By day the LORD directs his love, at night his song is with me— a prayer to the God of my life. 9 I say to God my Rock, "Why have you forgotten me? Why must I go about mourning, oppressed by the enemy?" 10 My bones suffer mortal agony as my foes taunt me, saying to me all day long, "Where is your God?" 11 Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.

1 Vindicate me, O God, and plead my cause against an ungodly nation; rescue me from deceitful and wicked men. 2 You are God my stronghold. Why have you rejected me? Why must I go about mourning, oppressed by the enemy? 3 Send forth your light and your truth, let them guide me; let them bring me to your holy mountain, to the place where you dwell. 4 Then will I go to the altar of God, to God, my joy and my delight. I will praise you with the harp, O God, my God. 5 Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me? Put your hope in God, for I will yet praise him, my Savior and my God.

“I think I can, I think I can, I think I can,” the little blue engine said, as it chugged up the hill to deliver the toys to the village on the other side of the valley. This well known story features a little train who loads up his cars with some toys who had been stranded and tries to get them over a hill to some children in a valley. As the train approaches the hill, it is unsure as to whether it will make it or not. But the closer it gets, the further it goes, it continues to pump itself up by saying “I think I can.” As it finally nears the top, the little blue engine then finally says, “I know I can and I knew I could.” It had to talk itself through it.

Haven’t most of us done this at one time in our life or another? Whether it was calling a girl for a date, going through with a surgery, or getting pumped up for a big game, we have all had to “talk ourselves through it.” That’s what Psalms 42-43 (quickview)  seem to be doing as well. The Sons of Korah were facing difficult times. The recurring theme of the Psalm is - Why are you downcast, O my soul? Why so disturbed within me? They also said, My tears have been my food day and night. They didn’t know how they were going to get through their difficult times, but they tried to talk themselves through it. So today we’ll see how you can -


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