Outpourings of the Heart: a Blog Series on Exploring the Psalms of David and How He Related to God
I sit in the stillness of the morning, steam rising from the cup of hot tea in my hands, Bible open on my lap, heart ready and willing to soak up His love and truth woven through its pages.
Here in the quiet, I hear God speak the loudest, and as I turn to my assigned Bible readings for the day, I get excited when I see I’ll be journeying through a few Psalms.
It has always been my goal to read through the Bible in its entirety, so at the beginning of the new year, I decided to join a Bible reading group to help me achieve this goal.
Not all of my Bible reading has been beautifully poetic or awe-inspiring like the Psalms (Chronicles and Numbers, for example, were honestly hard to get through at times!), but still, I have loved every minute.
I have loved every minute of uncovering more and more about the heart of God through stories and real-life events that I was ignorant to before the turning of these unknown pages.
What I’ve noticed most recently, though, and what I find really astonishing, is how God mirrored parts of His own heart and character through many of the people we meet in the Bible.
The Heart of King David
For the past month or so, I’ve gotten to know King David pretty well through 1st & 2nd Samuel. The facts and events of his life and his reign over Israel are recorded in detail. But what has struck me the most about King David is not how greatly he ruled, or how many enemies he defeated, or how bravely he stood against the mighty and gigantic Goliath.
I mean, don’t get me wrong, there are lessons to be learned and wisdom to be gained from the different events in David’s life, and he did accomplish some pretty incredible things.
But what has stood out to me the most about King David was how he related to God.
Whenever I see that the Psalms are on the agenda for Bible reading for the day, I get excited to dive into the hidden corners of David’s heart and observe how he correlated with the Creator.
1st & 2nd Samuel illustrates David’s life, but the Psalms – I believe – are where his heart lies open, and I find that they are truly breathtaking.
The Psalms of David have drawn me in and attuned my soul to the whisperings of the Holy Spirit in a fresh and new way.
They are honest, raw, sometimes awkward, and uncomfortable to read, but above all, they are guttural outpourings of David’s soul to the God who created him.
In fact, in Psalm 62:8, David encourages us all to outpour to God continually;
“Trust in Him at all times, you people; pour out your hearts to Him, for God is our refuge.”
I’m a words person, so when I read this verse, I just had to look up the definition of the word ‘outpouring.’
What it Means to Outpour
Outpouring: something that streams out rapidly, an outburst of strong emotion, leakage, outflow, cascade.
I love that: an outburst of strong emotion.
David is quite literally telling us to lay out our whole hearts before the Lord because God can be trusted with whatever we are carrying inside of us.
This is how David related to God; wholeheartedly, holding nothing back.
And he did it continually, up until the very day that he died! So this posture of outpouring is a way of life. It’s a way of communing and talking to God.
And as I sit and read the raw, broken, honest outcries of David, I find myself aching to touch my Heavenly Father in that authentic, wholehearted way.
How Emotional Honesty Draws Us to Jesus
This week, I’ve tuned into the Soul Care Summit, an online retreat that’s designed to slow your soul and tend to your heart.
Among the many talented and wise speakers was Heather Bjur, whose words really resonated with me. Heather talked about how “emotional honesty” keeps our souls anchored to God and connected in community with those around us.
Emotional honesty, much like it sounds, is when we allow ourselves to be totally honest with how we’re feeling.
It’s when we choose to lean into our emotions rather than hide from or repress them.
Heather talked about how powerfully healing it can be to name the unnamed emotions that might be simmering beneath the surface of our souls and that the ultimate goal is to be emotionally honest with God.
Being emotionally honest with God starts by acknowledging how we feel and then outpouring those emotions to the One who can be trusted with our hearts, much like David tells us in Psalm 62.
After all, as Heather Bjur would say,
“Be where you are emotionally, because you can’t be somewhere else.”
When we are emotionally honest with ourselves and with God, just as David was, God becomes our refuge, just as David said in Psalm 62:8.
Our relationship with Jesus deepens and widens as we open our whole hearts to Him and lay out everything at His feet that’s crowding our souls.
As we reveal more of ourselves to God, He reveals more of Himself to us.
An Invitation into the Psalms of David in the Coming Weeks
I know that there is a big difference between reading the invitation to ‘outpour’ and the reality of actually doing it. It can feel awkward and uncomfortable, especially for those of us who don’t know where to start on this path of building a relational foundation with God.
But God wants you to know Him, dear one, and He longs for you to share your whole world with Him so that He can share His with you.
That’s why, in the weeks to come, I’ll be diving into this topic a little deeper as I take you on a journey with me to explore further how King David related to God.
By observing and dissecting a few of David’s Psalms in the coming weeks, I hope that we can grow together and tend the garden of our souls as we learn from one of Israel’s greatest kings how to move closer to the heart of God and relationally relate to Him.
I’m praying this mini blog series will give you the tools and encouragement you need to deepen your faith and strengthen your walk with Christ.
So, friend, be sure to join me in a few weeks as we begin this journey of relating more intimately to our Creator by taking a look at Psalm 42.
And remember, friend, you are BELOVED.