Praying the Psalms

Published: 2021-07-02

How do we learn to pray the Psalms? Since the mid 1980s, I’ve greatly benefited from praying the Psalms using a “Five Friends Method.” I like to think of the Psalms as “friends” who we invite into our lives daily to teach us to walk with God, who teach us to pray. Good friends come alongside our lives and help us along the way. Consider the Book of Psalms as 150 friends who want to know you better, who want to help you grow in your spiritual life with God. In the document found HERE, you’ll find a page with all 150 Psalms listed according to their number. This document is titled, “Learning to Pray the Psalms: 5 Friend Method.” Looking at this page, you’ll find along the left hand column the numbers 1 through 31. Consider those the dates of each month. On that date, go across that line, and there are your 5 Psalm “friends,” who want to walk with you as you walk with God. For example, on the fifth of the month, you’ll find Psalm 5, then Psalm 35, then Psalm 65, then Psalm 95, and finally Psalm 125. You’ll notice the bottom line, with 31st in the bottom left corner, and all the other numbers are 119. That is Psalm 119. On July 31st, open to Psalm 119 and enjoy praying the longest of the psalms, even a portion of these 176 verses. Also, you’ll find at the bottom a key with symbols. This is a way to track with how well you are getting to know the Psalms by praying them. Put a star next to your favorite psalms. Put musical notes next to any Psalm where you know a song that was written to a verse in that psalm. Circle any Psalm you have fully memorized, such as Psalm 23. Draw a square around any Psalm memorized in part, even one verse. Let’s press on to know our Lord Jesus Christ, who regularly prayed the Psalms, including while he was dying on the cross. Many blessings in Christ this season of praying the Psalms!