Lenten Devotional for March 2

Scholars believe that Psalm 1 and 2 form a unified introduction to this
book of the Bible. After the introduction, we jump to two beloved
psalms, Psalm 23 and 121. Psalm 23 is a psalm of thanksgiving in which
the writer proclaims confidence in God, more so than God’s comfort.
Psalm 121 is one of those few psalms that does not fit in a major
category. It is considered a Psalm of Ascent, or Pilgrim Psalm. It would
have been used by people traveling to Jerusalem to worship at the
Temple. Psalms 23 and 121 share two truths to remember as we begin
to use our devotional. God watches over us in our prayer, study, and
work. Also, we can proclaim confidence in God’s everlasting love and
care. As you begin, ask for God’s help to believe these in your heart
and mind.

Questions

1. Before you read each day, pray to God and invite God to be present
in your study and reflection. What is God showing you today in the
psalms? Is there a specific verse or word that stands out to you? How
will you carry this through your day in thought, word, and action?
2. What are ideas and themes that appear in the “introduction” to the
Book of Psalms (Psalms 1 and 2)? Write these down. As we read in the
coming weeks, take note of when they appear in other psalms and
categories.
3. As you begin your Lenten devotional, try different ways of reading
that will make it easy to reserve time for daily exercise. Try reading
the devotional at different times of day to see what you enjoy and
works in your life. You can read the psalm out loud, silently, or listen
to an audio version. Invite a friend or family member to read with you
and discuss what it says to you. You can use these throughout Lent.
4. When we read scripture that is very familiar to us, there is a
temptation to glance at it or read it quickly. Take extra time to read
these psalms and their words to us today. Try reading the psalm in a
different translation or read it out loud to yourself.

Happy are those
who do not follow the advice of the wicked,
or take the path that sinners tread,
or sit in the seat of scoffers;
but their delight is in the law of the Lord,
and on his law they meditate day and night.
They are like trees
planted by streams of water,
which yield their fruit in its season,
and their leaves do not wither.
In all that they do, they prosper.
The wicked are not so,
but are like chaff that the wind drives away.
Therefore the wicked will not stand in the judgment,
nor sinners in the congregation of the righteous;
for the Lord watches over the way of the righteous,
but the way of the wicked will perish.

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