“Sing to the Lord with thanksgiving; play the lyre to our God, who covers the sky with clouds, prepares rain for the earth, and causes grass to grow on the hills. He provides the animals with their food, and the young ravens, what they cry for. He is not impressed by the strength of a horse; He does not value the power of a man. The Lord values those who fear Him, those who put their hope in His faithful love” (Psalm 147:7-11 HCSB).
The psalmist begins this psalm by calling upon the people to sing to the Lord. He quickly transitions into a series of descriptions of God’s taking care of the natural order—He provides clouds, rain, grass, and food for the animals; He attends to the cry of the young ravens. Notice how each element provides the basis for the next. When the psalmist looked at the natural order, he saw God’s hand; he saw God’s provision, and it moved him to praise God.
Do we see God’s hand and provision in the natural processes of our world?
The psalmist transitions from recounting how God provides clouds, rain, grass, and food for animals to reflecting on what God doesn’t value and what He does. The might of horses and the swiftness of men spoke of military prowess within the ancient world. Strong cavalry and swift soldiers were essential for national defense and conquest. Nations looked to these as a source of their might, what made them great.
But military power, strong horses, and swift soldiers did not impress God. The one who covers the heavens with clouds, sends rain on the earth, makes the mountains sprout grass, and cares for birds and beasts does not value the things that nations prize and delight in. Rather, He values those who fear Him, who wait for His faithful love.
We tend to value different things than God does. It’s not our power and prowess that delights God. It’s our fear and awe of Him. In constructing verse 11, the psalmist defines those who fear God as those who wait for His faithfulness.
Do we have the patience to wait for God’s faithful love?
Even as followers of God, we often find ourselves enamored with the things our world delights in, but it shouldn’t be so. God values things differently than we do. The things we value should reflect His values.
And we should never forget to look at the world around us and allow ourselves to be overwhelmed with awe at the one who provides clouds, rain, grass, and food for beasts and birds. He’s not only worthy of our praise and thanksgiving; He values our awe of Him and our waiting for His faithful love.
Lord, when we look at the world around us that You created and oversee, our hearts are overwhelmed with awe for You. We praise you and wait for Your faithfulness. Amen.