In suffering, we are told that we can pray to God because he hears us. It can be difficult to know what words to say in prayer. Models for prayer are helpful but for this devotion, the focus will be on using the psalms to pray. The psalms are prayers and are given to us to use. The following psalm is Psalm 121.

As you read to yourself, consider what these verses mean to you in the context of your day-to-day life. Take your time, journaling or noting what sticks out to you.

What comfort is expressed in these words?

How might you use this psalm to comfort someone you know who may be suffering?

I lift up my eyes to the hills.
                From where does my help come?
My help comes from the LORD,
                who made heaven and earth.
He will not let your foot be moved;
                he who keeps you will not slumber.
Behold, he who keeps Israel
                will neither slumber nor sleep.
The LORD is your keeper;
               the LORD is your shade on your right hand.
The sun shall not strike you by day,
                nor the moon by night.
The LORD will keep you from all evil;
                he will keep your life.
The LORD will keep your going out and your coming in
from this time forth and forevermore.
-Psalm 121

Now that you’ve read through Psalm 121 and considered how this psalm relates to your life, read it again, but this time, out loud. It can serve as your prayer for this week, as well. Reciting scripture passages over and over lets you contemplate them and discover them anew. What is significant today may differ from what is significant tomorrow. You may try this exercise with any of the other psalms or passages of Scripture that you like. This inward digestion of the Word of God is the Holy Spirit working through you.

The following prayer contains the text of the hymn Through Jesus’ Blood and Merit (LSB 746).

Through Jesus’ blood and merit, I am at peace with God. What, then, can daunt my spirit, however dark my road? My courage shall not fail me, for God is on my side; though hell itself assail me, its rage I may deride. There’s nothing that can sever from this great love of God; no want, no pain whatever, no famine, peril, flood. Though thousand foes surround me, for slaughter mark His sheep, they never shall confound me, the victory I shall reap. For neither life’s temptation nor death’s most trying hour nor angels of high station nor any other power nor things that now are present nor things that are to come nor height, however pleasant, nor darkest depths of gloom nor any creature ever shall from the love of God this ransomed sinner sever; for in my Savior’s blood this love has its foundation; God hears my faithful prayer and long before creation named me His child and heir. Amen.