Your soul needs expression. Don’t repress…express; that will protect you from becoming depressed! When David, the psalmist, told his soul to hope, we don’t know what he did to help himself have hope, but I have a feeling it was some kind of “soul expression.” As a songwriter, singer, and musician, he likely picked up his harp, surveyed the Judean hillside and began to strum. He may have written some lyrics and configured a melody to express the feelings he was experiencing.
If David lived today, he might have picked up his iPod, put on his headphones, and examined his play list! He could have then chosen songs that would help his soul with the expression he needed. If there is no expression when our souls are hurting…if there is repression of those feelings…then the result will be depression and hopelessness. So, what songs might have been on David’s play list? Throughout the book of Psalms, we get a hint. Read, hum, or sing the psalms of David listed below to help lift your soul when your soul needs hope:
“But You are a shield around me, O LORD; You bestow glory on me and lift up my head. To the LORD I cry aloud, and He answers me from His holy hill. Selah. I lie down and sleep; I wake again, because the LORD sustains me.” (Psalm 3:3-5)
“LORD, You have assigned me my portion and my cup; You have made my lot secure. The boundary lines have fallen for me in pleasant places; surely I have a delightful inheritance. I will praise the LORD, who counsels me; even at night my heart instructs me. I have set the LORD always before me. Because He is at my right hand, I will not be shaken.” (Psalm 16:5-8)
“I call on you, O God, for You will answer me; give ear to me and hear my prayer. Show the wonder of your great love, You who save by your right hand those who take refuge in you from their foes. Keep me as the apple of your eye; hide me in the shadow of Your wings.” (Psalm 17:6-8)
“The law of the LORD is perfect, reviving the soul. The statutes of the LORD are trustworthy, making wise the simple. The precepts of the LORD are right, giving joy to the heart. The commands of the LORD are radiant, giving light to the eyes. The fear of the LORD is pure, enduring forever. The ordinances of the LORD are sure and altogether righteous. They are more precious than gold, than much pure gold; they are sweeter than honey, than honey from the comb. By them is your servant warned; in keeping them there is great reward.” (Psalm 19:7-11)
“Some trust in chariots and some in horses, but we trust in the name of the LORD our God. They are brought to their knees and fall, but we rise up and stand firm.” (Psalm 20:7-8)