The Lord your God is with you,
he is mighty to save.
He will take great delight in you,
he will quiet you with his love,
he will rejoice over you with singing.
Prayer is taking in God’s delight in us. Prayer is being quieted by God’s love. Prayer is listening to God sing songs of joy over us.
Whether our parents delighted over us or not, whether our parents quieted us with love or not, whether our parents sang for joy about us or not, God does.
God delights in us. God loves us. God is singing songs about us. God is rejoicing over us with singing.
Prayer is allowing ourselves to hear those songs of love and joy.
Most of us probably have never imagined that such pure, joyful love could be directed toward us. Many of us see ourselves as unlovable or as worthless. And many of us see God as disappointed in us, or as rejecting of us.
So the thought of God singing love songs to us and songs of joy about us may be more than we can take in. We may read these words and find that they do not penetrate our minds or hearts. They may fall on hardened soil. Our fears, shame, guilt and despair may keep us from hearing God singing over us. As a result, we may feel incapable of participating in the prayer of listening to God’s songs of love for us.
Try for just a moment to imagine what it might be like to pray in this way. Imagine what it would be like to ask God to open your heart, mind and spirit to listen for God’s songs of love and joy. Imagine what it would be like to see God as One who delights in you and loves you this tenderly and powerfully. Imagine what it might be like to see yourself as loved and cherished in this way by your Maker.
The truth is that if we allowed ourselves to listen to God’s songs it would transform our lives. The sweetness and the power of God’s songs of love would begin to turn our fear into security, our shame into childlike humility, our guilt into release, our despair into hope.
We would begin to experience God in new ways. We would experience God as the One who looks at us through eyes of love. We would come to know God as the kind and loving parent we have always longed for God to be. And we would begin to know ourselves in new ways. We would know ourselves as loved and lovable, as cherished and of infinite value to the One who made us.
Prayer is hearing the songs of love that God is singing over us.
Help me to hear your songs
of love and joy and delight.
Help me to begin to believe
that these songs you sing
are for me.
May I take in the comfort
of your love.
May your love quiet my fears
and shame and despair.
May I hear the songs of joy
you sing over me.
May your songs heal
how I see you,
how I see myself,
how I see all others.
Ask God to quiet and comfort your anxious thoughts.
Ask God to help you hear the songs of joy God is singing over you.
Allow yourself to sit quietly and listen, as you are able, to God’s love songs.
If this feels impossible, let it be. The time will come when the music will break through for you to hear.