A Sermon to Ourselves

If you are joining us here today because of my devotion with Proverbs 31, I’m so glad that you are here! If you are a “regular” blogging friend and would like to read the devotion, just click here!

I have been challenged. Challenged by my pastor, Steven Furtick, who often begins his sermon each week with a passage from the Bible, that he is often saying from memory. Sometimes these are some pretty long passages! It is a true example of filling your heart and mind with God’s Words.

Several months ago, that passage was Psalm 103. After this particular sermon, I started reading David’s speech to himself each day, as a way to get my heart in the right place. After reading it so many times, I discovered, I knew a lot of it! I have now moved on to trying to memorize the whole thing. So far, I’m up to verse 10. I’d love to share this sermon to ourselves with you.

Psalm 103

Praise the Lord, O my soul; all my inmost being, praise his holy name.
(David is giving himself a command here – PRAISE THE LORD. He isn’t giving himself an out. Praise the Lord on the days when life is good. Praise the Lord when He does things the way that I want. No, it pretty much looks to me like we are to just flat out praise Him…regardless. To me, this is kind of like the fight for joy that John Piper talks about).

Praise the Lord, O my soul, (in case you didn’t get it the first time, heart, I’m going to instruct you to do it again) and forget not all his benefits-
(let’s go ahead and name a few – forgiveness, mercy, grace, patience, hope, unfailing love, healing, joy, peace, kindness, goodness, faithfulness, this could go on for a very long time if we were going to truly remember ALL of His benefits!)

who forgives all your sins and heals all your diseases, who redeems your life from the pit (pretty much that is happening daily) and crowns you with love and compassion, (Let me degress here a second. One way that I help myself memorize this, is by having pictures in my head. On this verse, I picture myself being pulled out of a murky, muddy hole, like a deep well. Pulled out to the light above!)

who satisfies your desires with good things so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s (there is absolutely no comparison to the “good” things of the world we are living in and the good things of the King of the Universe. I’ll take His good any time, that is as long as I can keep my heart off of what the world keeps saying is good! I’ve seen it; I’ve experienced it. I just have to keep reminding myself that it is true; His way ALWAYS leads to life!)

The Lord works righteousness and justice for all the oppressed. He made known his ways to Moses, his deeds to the people of Israel. (Make them known to me, too, Lord!)

The Lord is compassionate and gracious, slow to anger, abounding in love. He will not always accuse, nor will he harbor his anger forever; He does not treat us as our sins deserve nor repay us according to our iniquities. For as high as the heavens are above the earth, so great is his love for those for fear him.”

So, that is as far as I have gotten. Some mornings, I will preach this sermon to myself before I get out of bed. Some nights, I will say these powerful words to myself before I sleep. Either way, it is one more way that I am teaching myself the truth.

Do you try to replace your thoughts with His thoughts? If so, please share with us what works for you so we can try it to! Just click on comments below. We can’t wait to hear!



  1. Hi, The holidays seem to be extra difficult for me, even though I have a husband and a son (who came home from college for the holidays), I work at home and am alone alot. The up side is that I have alot of time to talk to the Lord. I am trying to do as you said replacing the lies of the enemy with the truth of our Father .. I am new at using Gods word in this way even though I read a passage each day.. and it takes work to stop and focus on the Lord when the emotions rise, rather than throwing a pity party or escaping in other ways like tv which I stopped waching a few years ago, video games or friends(who are often busy this time of year), but I started memorizing psalm 139. My pastor recently told us something similar and how we have to digest the word.. he gave the example of biting a piece of bread and standing there slowly chewing it at the pulpit while everyone was waiting.. and he said that is how you have to digest the Word. I think truely having the Lord be my everything is what I need; to be at peace, to gain patience, to really mature, and to be used by Him more. I can say that He definately has been my rock and is always there, I can count on Him. I can see that keeping his truth present in my heart and mind really helps me to bat down those abnoxious insecurity thoughts that come my way and to know He is behind me. So I try not focus on the discontentment and boredome that sometimes rises, but actually step out and do something positive for my family or others and know it is pleasing to the Lord. He is my purpose.

  2. Holly,
    I actually started volunteering at Proverbs 31 for some of the reasons you mentioned. As a stay at home mom, I was lonely. I was in the Word a lot, but I needed to give away. So, I started entering information at the office. Giving away is a great way to take our minds off of the negative and off of ourselves and onto Him and others.
    Merry Christmas!

  3. Holly,
    I actually started volunteering at Proverbs 31 for some of the reasons you mentioned. As a stay at home mom, I was lonely. I was in the Word a lot, but I needed to give away. So, I started entering information at the office. Giving away is a great way to take our minds off of the negative and off of ourselves and onto Him and others.
    Merry Christmas!

  4. Lynn, thank you so much. It's nice to know that no matter how much we seem to "have it together" those thoughts and doubts can seep in and bring us down. Thank you for your honesty. I often use 2 Timothy 1:7 For God did not give us a spirit of timidity, but a spirit of power, of love and of self-discipline as part of a sermon to myself when I find myself apprehensive, afraid, or doubting. Have a wonderful week and a very blessed Christmas!

  5. Lynne, it's always good to know others have the same trials in life. 🙂 I am actually looking into joining a ministry so that should be good! Thanks and Merry Christmas to you too!

  6. Thank You Lynn, Reading PS 103 is of great help in times of need.

  7. Thanks for your devo today. Loved it! He is so good and so gentle at changing me. Praise the Lord!

  8. Hello! There are several scriptures that I use to get my mind on His thoughts…

    Like Holly, I use Psalm 139, especially verse 14. I tell myself that GOD has made me, so I am one of His works and He took precious time to make me (when I am having self-esteem issues).

    In the past few months, I have focused on II Corinthians 4, specifically v. 18. I have had trouble on my job, in that I have been told that it was going to end in September (after just returning to it in August for the school year), then being told that it would end at the end of the semester (January), and finally being told that it would end at the end of the school year (June). When I got the news the first time, I went home and opened my Bible to these verses. To the human eye, it looked like all was lost, like my job was gone! However, I just didn't feel like GOD wanted it to end in that manner or at that time (even though I knew that I wouldn't be there for too many more years), so I told myself to "fix [my] eyes not on what is seen, but on what is unseen" and that "what is seen is temporary, but what is unseen is eternal" (v. 18). I knew that GOD had placed me there from the beginning, so I reminded myself that despite what I was seeing at that time, GOD's will would prevail – and it did!

  9. I do try to replace my thoughts with His, but my mind so often races back to the unwanted, anxious thoughts. One verse I pray over and over is Lord, bring every thought captive under Your control. (2 Cor. 10:5)

    Needing Him to continually renew my mind,

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