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Encouragement from the Psalms

The psalms have been used throughout history to worship God, as prayers or songs. I’ve compiled a list of ones to encourage you in troubling times.

I don’t know about you, but lately I’ve been discouraged by a lot of things going on in our country. There is so much discord and disagreement about what our society’s problems are, and what to do to fix them. I believe that if we looked to the God of the Bible for guidance and direction, many of these problems would be fixed. Unfortunately, our culture just seems to be moving further from God. What started as a shift from moral absolutes to relative truth – what’s true for you is fine, but what’s true for me can be different and just as valid – is now becoming increasingly antagonistic toward the truths of God’s Word.

The psalms have been used throughout history to worship God, as prayers or songs. For months now, I have noticed how several psalms seem to speak to my heart, giving me the words to pray during these trying times. Since the beginning of the year, I have been reading through the Bible using The Daily Bible, which lays out the entire Word of God in 365 daily readings, presented chronologically. When it comes to the psalms, they are presented within the historical context whenever the context is indicated. The rest are grouped together in broad categories. I am now reading through a group labeled “Psalms for the Troubled Soul.” Starting with these, I’ve compiled a list of the psalms that I believe make a great set of prayers that I can reference whenever I’m in need of encouragement in the midst of this troubling world. I pray that they can be a blessing to you in the same way. (a brief description of each psalm is taken, for the most part, from The Daily Bible)

  • Psalm 3 – prayer of desperation
  • Psalm 5 – prayer for protection of the righteous
  • Psalm 6 – prayer for deliverance from enemies
  • Psalm 7 – prayer for refuge from enemies
  • Psalm 10 – prayer for relief from oppression by the wicked
  • Psalm 11 – security of righteous from threats of the wicked
  • Psalm 13 – prayer for salvation from enemies
  • Psalm 17 – prayer for rescue from enemies
  • Psalm 18 – song of deliverance
  • Psalm 23 – The Lord as a protective Shepherd
  • Psalm 26 – prayer for redemption of the righteous
  • Psalm 28 – prayer for salvation of righteous and punishment of wicked
  • Psalm 31 – prayer for relief from pursuers and slanderers
  • Psalm 35 – prayer for vindication in the eyes of gloating enemies
  • Psalm 37 – the righteous have no reason to envy the wicked
  • Psalm 41 – prayer for weak and those betrayed by friends
  • Psalm 43 – prayer for insight in the face of opposition
  • Psalm 44 – confession of national sin and prayer for restoration
  • Psalm 46 – refuge and strength in the God who rules over nations
  • Psalm 54 – prayer for deliverance from attackers and slanderers
  • Psalm 55 – the anguish of having disloyal companions
  • Psalm 56 – prayer for confidence
  • Psalm 59 – prayer for God’s strength
  • Psalm 60 – prayer for restoration
  • Psalm 61 – prayer for God’s defense and shelter
  • Psalm 62 – God is our only strength, whose love excels all others’
  • Psalm 64 – plea against conspirators who scheme evil deeds
  • Psalm 69 – prayer for end of scorn
  • Psalm 70 – urgency of the need for God’s deliverance
  • Psalm 71 – prayer for God’s presence throughout life
  • Psalm 73 – questioning the prosperity of the wicked
  • Psalm 74 – prayer for God to restore His people
  • Psalm 77 – the comfort of God’s record of deliverance
  • Psalm 79 – when will God hear our cry and repay enemies?
  • Psalm 83 – prayer for justice for oppressing nations
  • Psalm 86 – prayer for mercy in the face of enemies
  • Psalm 91 – the personal protection of one who trusts in God
  • Psalm 102 – a nation’s prayer, like that of an afflicted person
  • Psalm 108 – prayer for victory over enemies
  • Psalm 109 – prayer that false accusers are repaid
  • Psalm 120 – prayer for deliverance from liars who press war
  • Psalm 121 – the Lord watches over His people
  • Psalm 123 – prayer for mercy
  • Psalm 140 – prayer for protection from violent people
  • Psalm 142 – prayer for refuge from enemies
  • Psalm 143 – prayer for preservation of life and protection against trouble
  • Psalm 144 – prayer for God’s power upon enemies
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