Daily encouragement

Video by

Tyler Davis

ACF Youth Culture Student Leader

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Psalm 30:11-12

You turned my wailing into dancing; you removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy, that my heart may sing your praises and not be silent. Lord my God, I will praise you forever.

Behind the Scenes

At the risk of throwing him under the bus, I have something to tell you about my husband. You know those praise songs that just repeat the same line over and over again for five minutes straight? Yeah, he can't stand them. If one comes on my playlist in the car, he's switching it faster than I can say, "Hey! I like that one!"

And while he may be able to avoid this repetition himself, one such song has been on repeat in my head recently. It says, over and over, I could never thank you enough. And thanks to some good news I got a few months back, I've been feeling that! When desperate prayers finally get to turn into praise, it can feel as though there aren't enough ways to say thank you, Jesus! So I'll settle for just saying it over and over!

It seems David was feeling the same when he penned Psalm 30. To end it he says to God, "You turned my wailing into dancing; you removed my sackcloth and clothed me with joy, that my heart may sing your praises and not be silent." And here's where I'm reminded of that song's repetitive refrain: "Lord my God, I will praise you forever."

I could never thank you enough. Because God, you did it. Thank you!!

But for every time we get to praise him for the outcome we prayed for, there are plenty of other times when the desperate prayers stay desperate. When the tide doesn't turn - or at least hasn't turned yet - and we remain in that place of mourning that David seems quite familiar with.

Make it Real

Even though it IS a beautiful thing to celebrate when God answers a prayer, I am so thankful that the words of this psalm don't actually hinge on circumstances at all. It's not David's circumstances that turn his mourning into dancing; it's the Lord. It is the Lord who wraps him up in joy rather than leaving him in sorrow. We don't know if David's life changed at all, or if God just shifted his perspective from what he lacked to the joy that was his in the Lord.

What is more, the most humbling part of David's praise in these verses is his heart behind it. In the previous stanza of his song, he asks the Lord to show him mercy and restore his joy, not just so that he will be happy again, but so that he would have the strength to praise God. He says in verse 9, "What is gained if I am silenced, if I go down to the pit? Will the dust praise you? Will it proclaim your faithfulness?"

How often can I say that I desire God to turn my mourning into dancing so that I will have the strength and rationale to praise him all the more? No, I confess that I usually want my circumstances to bring me joy more than I want to let God give me his joy irrespective of my circumstances.

But praise God, our dancing isn't dependent on the reason for mourning being removed. HE turns mourning into dancing, regardless. We don't have to wait for grief to dissipate to experience his joy, because he is the one who can remove the mark of our sorrow and instead wrap us in the true joy we find in him alone.

Simply for the sake of who you are, Lord - entirely good, all the time, and worthy of praise, regardless of what life looks like - may we praise you forever.

End in Prayer

Lord Almighty, we praise you! In the good days, in the mourning, in the grief - we can never thank you enough for clothing us with your joy through it all. Remind us of your goodness today, no matter what life looks like, and of the joy we have in Christ. In his name we pray, Amen.

Written by

Kimber Gilbert

ACF Devo Team Leader