1 To the Chief Musician. Set to “The Lilies.” A Testimony of Asaph. A Psalm. Give ear, O Shepherd of Israel, You who lead Joseph like a flock; You who dwell [between] the cherubim, shine forth! 2 Before Ephraim, Benjamin, and Manasseh, Stir up Your strength, And come [and] save us! 3 Restore us, O God; Cause Your face to shine, And we shall be saved! 4 O LORD God of hosts, How long will You be angry Against the prayer of Your people? 5 You have fed them with the bread of tears, And given them tears to drink in great measure. 6 You have made us a strife to our neighbors, And our enemies laugh among themselves. 7 Restore us, O God of hosts; Cause Your face to shine, And we shall be saved! 8 You have brought a vine out of Egypt; You have cast out the nations, and planted it. 9 You prepared [room] for it, And caused it to take deep root, And it filled the land. 10 The hills were covered with its shadow, And the mighty cedars with its boughs. 11 She sent out her boughs to the Sea, And her branches to the River. 12 Why have You broken down her hedges, So that all who pass by the way pluck her [fruit]? 13 The boar out of the woods uproots it, And the wild beast of the field devours it. 14 Return, we beseech You, O God of hosts; Look down from heaven and see, And visit this vine 15 And the vineyard which Your right hand has planted, And the branch [that] You made strong for Yourself. 16 [It is] burned with fire, [it is] cut down; They perish at the rebuke of Your countenance. 17 Let Your hand be upon the man of Your right hand, Upon the son of man [whom] You made strong for Yourself. 18 Then we will not turn back from You; Revive us, and we will call upon Your name. 19 Restore us, O LORD God of hosts; Cause Your face to shine, And we shall be saved!PSALM 80:1-19
REVIVE US AGAIN
We have a few trees and plants in our yard that have just run wild. When we moved in we didn’t know anything about them nor about how to care for them so they’re had 5 years to run in their own direction. They were a mess with branches running every which way, bugs, blight, and produced very few flowers or fruit. Our trees and plants were in need of some sort of revival. Leaving them to themselves didn’t provide an abundant carefree existence. It caused them to become eye sores, sickly, and overgrown. The sort of revival these trees/plants needed wouldn’t happen unless someone stepped in to care for them.
This year I did a little research on our trees/ plants, bought a few sharp instruments for cutting, and watched a few pruning masters at work. I stepped in and applied my new found skills on our trees and soon enough they all came roaring back to life in all the right places. (It was interesting to note that at first it looked like I had killed the trees because they were in such a drastic need of pruning, but later in the spring/ summer they all came to full blossom/fruit!)
In the same way the nation of Israel needed revival. It has run too long in it’s own direction! They need the Lord to step in if it will ever flourish again. Asaph calls out to God to send a man who will be that instrument of flourishing. One who God will use to revive a dying people and bring them back to a place of brilliance and worship.
We know that the Son of Man (v. 17) is Jesus! He is the only one who can bring flourishing back to floundering souls. He is the only one who can restore the hope of a broken down nation. He is the only one who can cause hope to shine in the darkest of nights.
Have you run too long in your own direction? Find yourself in need of revival? Come to Jesus today and ask him for revival in your life. Invite him to prune the things that distract you from following Him (Hebrews 12:1), immerse yourself in His word (Psalm 1:2-3), and draw near to God (James 4:8). Go back and do the things you did when you first fell in love with Jesus (Revelation 2:5).
Father, How often like sheep are we prone to run astray and in our own direction. We should know by now that when we run long in our own direction it never leads to true and lasting happiness or flourishing. Sin is always fun for a season, but the longer we live in it the more foul our lives become. We find ourselves in need of you and in constant need of revival. We pray that your hand of grace and mercy would be upon us and that you would call us to repentance. I am thankful that you have promised to never leave nor forsake those who belong to you for we need your constant hand of care. In Jesus’ Name, Amen.
I’m reading and blogging the Psalms Through The Summer. I’d love for you to join me. You can find out a little more here.