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Summer in the Psalms - Psalm 29

Ascribe the Glory Due His Name by Theresa Boedeker

Oh hey, short on time? No worries! I'd love to join you on your commute or daily walk/run, or shoot, even while you take care of that to-do list. We can't let these things get in the way of this friendship. It's just starting to get good! Click below to listen to the blogcast.

How do you get to know someone?

By spending time with them, right?

If we characterize someone based on what we've heard others say about them, we may get a tainted or blurred picture.

I remember starting a new school as a second grader. Music and P.E. were alternate days, so while my sister (two grades ahead) went to music, I went to P.E. on the first day of school. The way home that day, the car was filled with stories of our first day of school, but when I asked about music class, I was taken back by the behavior my sister described. I knew of teachers who would casually put a pencil or pen in their mouth while flipping through a stack of papers or reaching for something, but sliding a pencil through missing teeth? It was like the old tale of Miss Nelson is Missing! by James Marshall.

Needless to say, I walked half nervously, half curiously to Music the next day. Turns out, my sister had made it up! I should have known... There are fewer things she likes better than a good prank. There was nothing obnoxious about how my new music teacher held pencils ...or tuning forks, for that matter.

I say all this to say, we can't base our relationship with someone based on what others say about them. We have to get to know them for ourselves. Same is true for our relationship with God. It's meant to be personal. Not what a parent or friend says, not even what a pastor or mentor says, but who is God to you? What glory do you ascribe to His name?

This week, my friend, Theresa Boedeker, is helping us unpack Psalm 29 so we can do just this.

Theresa describes herself as a formerly lost sinner, continually redeemed - now delighting in grace and God's love. She enjoys being outside, spending time with family and friends, reading, writing, and telling funny stories. She is passionate about encouraging people to remember God's truth about themselves, life, and grace. She blogs at where she unwraps life with words.

Ascribe to the Lord the glory due his name; Worship the Lord in the splendor of his holiness. - Psalm 29:2 (NIV)

Imagine an armoire divided in half, each side represents our thoughts and words concerning God.

One side is full of complaints, whining, criticism, blame, anger, accusations, disappointments, and "why haven't you?" questions. All six shelves are full to the brim.

The other side represents our praise, rejoicing, wonder, awe, celebration, gratitude, adoration, and thankfulness for God. The shelves are dusty. Only a few praises lie at the back of the bottom shelf.

Unfortunately, this represents many of our minds. Instead of noticing the 89% of good, we focus on the 11% that isn't to our liking. We do this with ourselves, others, and God. We are like the Israelites complaining in the desert about their lack of meat, when God was performing miracles of water and manna.

Psalm 29 is a praise song about God. The "glory due his name" (2). His "powerful" and "majestic" voice (4) that "thunders over the waters" (3) and causes great things to happen. From creating this earth to "twisting the oaks" (9).

"Ascribe to the Lord glory and strength" (1), "Ascribe to the Lord the glory due his name" (2). Ascribe means to assign, give credit, associate, and attach to. We are to associate and give God credit for the glory he deserves.

Not out of fear and obligation. But from love and awe. We desire to praise him because we know and see his goodness, power, love, and strength in our lives, in nature, and in others.

We compliment those we know, calling out their good points, the ways they help us and improve our lives. If we do this for our friends, how much more should we do this for God?

To allocate the credit that God is due, we need to get to know God - learn about his characteristics and nature. We need to see the true him.

So often we perceive God as being like the critical humans who raised us. The unloving and distant aunt we never wanted to kiss. Or the exacting coach who wasn't satisfied with our performance.

When we ascribe to God the disappointing and conditional human characteristics from past relationships, we will see very little to praise him for. Nor will we notice the real him.

When we view him as he is, a good father who loves us unconditionally no matter what we do. When we realize he is running always to meet us, even when we have strayed. When we comprehend that no matter what we do or do not do his love for us does not change. When we know that we do not have to earn his love, or our place in heaven, but that they are free gifts given with love, we will want to praise him, please him, sing of his goodness, talk about his greatness and holiness, and introduce him to our friends.

Get to know God as he is. Spend time with him and decide to believe what he says whether you feel like it is true or not.

Our loving Father does not give us what we deserve, but he lovingly gives us what we are unworthy to receive. For this, let us praise him all our days.

Then when we open our armoire door that represents our thoughts of God, the door labeled praise, what will come tumbling out will be our awe, gratitude, thankfulness, good and honorable thoughts, rejoicing, and love for God. We will join those in the Psalm who "all cry, "Glory!'"(9).

Now, It's Your Turn!

Before opening God's Word, take a moment to pray and ask God to meet you there. Then...

Read Psalm 29 a couple times. Highlight what stands out to you.

Circle verbs or specific wording you notice.

Then, write down a bullet point takeaway based on this. "I-statements" help make this personal. Think of this as a challenge statement.

  • My loving Father does not give me what I deserve, but He lovingly gives me what I am unworthy to receive. For this, I will praise Him all my days.

Then, jot down a question or two to think about today. You don't have to have the answer to this question now. And yield to the Holy Spirit - prayerfully ask God to search your heart and lead you to more truth and grow your faith through the Holy Spirit.

  • How can I better see God for the holy and loving father He is and start praising Him more consistently?

Again, we don't have to be Bible scholars and talk only in the thou's and art's of King James version to read this book...because when we pray before we read, we are not alone. The Holy Spirit is with us, guiding and teaching us.

Praise God for this!

And praise God for refreshment as we are intentional to spend a summer in the Psalms together, for if we want His truth to ever be on our lips, it must first be planted in our hearts.

Our strength grows as we rely on strength from above. Our joy grows as we see God transforming us from the inside out. Our peace grows as we spend time in God's presence, and we find rest when we intentionally seek the Lord first in our lives, for the Lord is ever our portion.

The good life, well it starts with a good day. Then another. Then another. Let's choose to live #TheGoodDay one day at a time.

I love hearing from you, so go ahead. Leave a comment. Be brave. Maybe your comment will speak life into someone else!

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