A Psalm for Your Calm: Psalm 34

A Psalm for Your Calm: Psalm 34

C.S. Lewis once wrote:

I think we delight to praise what we enjoy because the praise not merely expresses but completes the enjoyment; it is its appointed consummation. It is not out of compliment that lovers keep on telling one another how beautiful they are; the delight is incomplete till it is expressed.

That is, part of fully enjoying a thing is the experience of sharing it with and praising it to others. Joy in my vacation is complete when I share my moments with friends and family. Our happiness over a newborn child is magnified when we show off the many pictures we took. Our excitement in getting a new job is completed only when we can tell our family.

It is no different with God. When we truly know God, we long for others to share and experience his goodness as well. We witness this in Psalm 34:

I will bless the Lord at all times;
his praise shall continually be in my mouth.
My soul makes its boast in the Lord;
let the humble hear and be glad.
Oh, magnify the Lord with me…
Oh, taste and see that the Lord is good!
Blessed is the man who takes refuge in him! (1-2, 8)

This Psalm reminds us that knowing God isn’t simply knowing facts about God; rather, it is experiential. We are called to “taste and see” the Lord’s goodness. This is a sensory invitation, and one that the writer has seen in his own life:

“This poor man cried, and the Lord heard him and saved him out of all his troubles” (v. 5).

He recognized that the goodness he witnessed on a daily basis, the deliverance he received, wasn’t by accident or luck, but from the direct hand of his creator. He didn’t simply know God’s goodness intellectually, but experientially.

Many of us have witnessed God’s goodness and deliverance in our lives. We have shared in the sweetness of fellowship. We have felt God’s love in our hearts and received it from the hands of our Christian family. The Lord has delivered each us from sin, death, and damnation and made us heirs of the grand inheritance of eternal life and a new world. We have tasted and seen that the Lord is good—are we sharing that with others?