Psalm 62. One Great Chorus.

Today’s Lectio Divina: Excerpts from Psalm 62. (MsgB)

A David Psalm.

God, the One and Only— I’ll wait as long as He says.
Everything I need comes from Him, so why not?
He’s solid rock under my feet, breathing room for my soul,
An impregnable castle: I’m set for life.

In successful song writing, a great chorus must have several characteristics. Characteristics, which typically define a memorable chorus, making it stand out from amongst other musical meanderings and lyrics that go nowhere.

First and foremost, a great chorus must sum up the overall theme of the song that it’s attached to. While the verses of a song give its listeners varied detail to the composer’s story, a great chorus must clearly bring us back home to the main and the plain theme of the song itself. Brian Doerksen, one of the best contemporary song-writers in Christian circles today, once told me that a great chorus must answer the burning question of “so what?” In other words, a well-crafted song makes it way through the commentary of its verses, but when you hit the chorus, a great one will beg to be sung using this phrase — “and that’s why I say…”

Secondly, a great chorus must be repeatable and easily remembered. Simplicity is the key when it comes to great lyric writing. And when great lyrics are combined with an easily-sung melody, the result is one great chorus that begs to be sung over and over again.

While the biblical text of Psalm 62 doesn’t include the melody line, I’m guessing that David’s chorus, which is recited twice throughout this song, must have been a big favorite amongst God’s people. I can see crowds of people listening to David sing his verses but as he approached the chorus, I can envision the whole crowd singing along with him as well!

As I see it, the chorus of Psalm 62 is a true anthem to our high God and King. One great chorus that spells out for all generations the type of relationship we should look to have with the Ultimate Creator of the Universe. Let me unpack it just a bit for you and see if you agree.

God, the One and Only — I’ll wait as long as He says. (David’s chorus starts by placing the Supreme God at the very beginning of his lyrics. No one or no thing will stand higher than God in this chorus. Our right response to this high God then, is to choose to wait patiently for His word on any and all subjects.)

Everything I need comes from Him, so why not? (God is the ultimate source for any and all things that we need or want in this life, so why think about going elsewhere?)

He’s solid rock under my feet, breathing room for my soul, (God is both my foundation for my feet and the air from above that my lungs need in order to breathe. How expansive is that?)

An impregnable castle: I’m set for life. (God is a massive fortress that is impossible to capture or enter by force; and as long as I’m inside His palace, I’m safe and sound from life’s dangers.)

Wow. Four lines of powerful lyrics packed into one great chorus that speaks volumes to all who care to listen. No wonder Psalm 62 repeats these four phrases with such regularity.

King David, you songwriter you. You really did it. You wrote for all time…one great chorus! So, in closing, I think I’ll sing it again…

My prayer: God, the One and Only— I’ll wait as long as You say. Everything I need comes from You, so why not? You’re a solid rock under my feet, breathing room for my soul.
An impregnable castle: I’m set for life. For Your name’s sake. Amen.

My questions to ponder: As I see it, the gift of good song-crafting is missing from so many of our contemporary Christian songs. What needs to change in our church environments so that the crafting of our words and music and the careful pursuit of excellence can be restored once again to the arts? 

So what is God speaking to you today as you ponder the Psalms?

Over a 50-week period, you and I will take a deeper look at The Psalms: God’s Songbook of Prayers. In order to keep all the blog sessions organized, we suggest you bookmark our Contemplating the Psalms home page for ease of use. Keep in mind that one of the best ways to explore the on-going applications of this blog series is to walk alongside a biblically-based, Christ-centered spiritual director who is familiar with how to make material like this part of your overall spiritual formation in God. Many of our directors in our Sustainable Faith-Heartland network are available to companion you in your journey with Jesus. Click here for more info.

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