Restore Our Land, God, and Put Away Your Displeasure–Psalm 85:1-9–Psalm 85:1-9
1 You, Lord, showed favor to Your land;
You restored the fortunes of Jacob.
2 You forgave the iniquity of Your people
and covered all their sins.
3 You set aside all Your wrath
and turned from Your fierce anger.
4 Restore us again, God our Savior,
and put away Your displeasure toward us.
5 Will You be angry with us forever?
Will You prolong Your anger through all generations?
6 Will You not revive us again,
that Your people may rejoice in You?
7 Show us Your unfailing love, Lord,
and grant us Your salvation.
8 I will listen to what God the Lord says;
He promises peace to His people, His faithful servants—
but let them not turn to folly.
9 Surely His salvation is near those who fear Him,
that His glory may dwell in our land.
Ever catch yourself thinking, ‘When will God heal our land?’ Thoughts such as these have presented themselves all throughout Old Testament and New. In truth, ever since the fall of Adam and Eve, there has always been violence and chaos and, to a certain extent, there always will be due to our “fallen nature.” But our God is a miraculous and forgiving God. A Rescuer and Redeemer; an ever-present help in trouble; the One Who delivers us from the hands of evil and restores our soul. He is the ultimate Vindicator. The One Who decides who, what, where, when and why.
Take a closer look at verses 4-7 above. Look at how eerily familiar the feelings of the psalmist are to the feelings many of us are experiencing today. The psalmist knew what God was capable of. He was well aware of the Lord’s great and infinite power (v 1-3). The question has never been can God restore our land and heal our people – but rather will He. And the latter completely depends on us.
Now read over verses 8 and 9 again: “I will listen to what God the Lord says; He promises peace to His people, His faithful servants— but let them not turn to folly. Surely His salvation is near those who fear Him, that His glory may dwell in our land.” You see, God always keeps His end of the bargain, so long as we keep ours. What is ours? In short, to honor Him. To obey His commands and precepts; to turn from our wicked (sinful) ways and desires, and to reverently fear Him – respecting Him in all our ways so that His power and Light can be spread across our hurting and darkened world. Keep in mind that all that God requires of us is for our greater good. It all stems from His great and unfathomable love for mankind – for you and for me.
So, before we go to Him in prayer we are wise to conduct a thorough examination of conscious. To take a good look at our lives – how we’re living it and how it all relates to what the Lord has asked of us. Are we, for example, spending time with Him? Obeying His commands? Honoring Him with our life choices and actions? Are we putting Him first? Remember, all that God asks of us is for our greater good!
God wants to answer your prayer today. He wants to do everything for you and for our world. But we must do our part. As you prayerfully read over and meditate on this powerful Psalm, think of ways you can better do your part. In the quiet of your soul, what do you hear God whispering to you? Anytime you (humbly) go before Him, He will speak to you. He will guide you. You need only to listen and then to obey. When you do, you can rest assured that as you boldly present your prayers and petitions before Him, He will grant them in accordance with His perfect and loving will.
Thanks be to God!
[Read and meditate on this psalm today. Let us know what it says to you in the comment section below.]