(October 26, 2016)
It is quite remarkable to me how different our approaches can be to the same scriptures read at different times in our lives. For the bulk of my life, I read through Psalms with very little understanding or emotion. It was, if I can put a blunt description on it, boring to me.
Then my life turned upside down. Suddenly I understand what it means to be surrounded by my enemies. I knew how it felt to have lying tongues laying wait to defame and snares being set secretly to destroy. I understood the pain that came from struggling to live the Gospel when confronted not only by your own weaknesses (which certainly exist), but by the actions of others.
Then, and only then, did I begin to understand Psalms. It was only after passing through this stage of my life that I could empathize with David’s pleas (both for freedom from his own sins and the damage caused by others). This is interesting in its own right, but even more important as a reminder of why we can’t read the scriptures only once or only occasionally – after all, as we change, our challenges change, and our perspective changes, the Lord stands ready to teach us new things through the same scriptures.