prayed to you again and again,
but I did not talk about my sins.
So I only became weaker and more miserable.
Every day you made life harder for me.
I became like a dry land in the hot summertime.
I decided to confess my sins to the Lord.
I stopped hiding my guilt and told you about my sins.
And you forgave them all!
Psalm 32:3-5 (ERV)
Selah is a Hebrew word meaning pause and reflect. It is believed to be a musical direction, much as the rest symbol is written in compositions. In the Bible, it is commonly found within the book of Psalms, a record of lyrics sung to and about God.
If you are not a musician, you may not think about the places within a piece of music where the composer inserts a pause. It’s easy to overlook moments of silence, focusing only on the noise. But intentional moments of rest carry as much significance as the notes themselves. Silence compounds desire.
In Psalm 32:4, the composer expresses distress with the strain of keeping secrets from God. He tells of how difficult life grows without being humble and fully transparent, “like a dry land in the hot summertime.”
Selah. Pause and reflect on that metaphor.
When, in your life, have you desperately needed Jesus? Do you know that feeling of being scorched and thirsting for a cool reprieve?
Quiet reflection on hard times can be a healthy moment of remembrance on what life is like without Jesus. It’s good to know from where we came. Or what might impede us yet again.
After the breath, the Psalmist releases the tension by giving his confession. “I stopped hiding my guilt and told you about my sins. And you forgave them all!”
The discord of the previous verse progressed into harmony! This moment of joy and praise is well worth another Selah!
Take a moment to reflect on the unconditional love and forgiveness of the Lord in your life!
Selah is the moment we slow enough to be present to the presence of God. We see our own position in relation to Him and can then, if need be, change our tune. Surrender. Confess. Repent. Praise!
The time we take to pause and reflect can be small sacred moments. The Psalmist wrote them into his worship. We too can intentionally write them into our lives.
Where does your life need habits of quiet reflection? Are you parched? Selah. Are you blessed? Selah!
Sharon has been writing and teaching biblically based curriculum, Bible studies, and devotionals since 2007.
She has had the unique position of writing curriculum and teaching for two private, Christ-based, residential recovery programs. Both programs primarily served women in the homeless community.
Sharon has traveled multiple times to Kenya, serving on medical teams and teaching in the rural Maasai communities. She’s been privileged to speak in Leadership camps intended on encouraging and empowering the impoverished, underprivileged, and often abused young women.
Within these ministries, Sharon has witnessed the transformative power of loving words spoken to the broken-hearted. Sharing God’s love and witnessing its transformative power has become her passion.
Sharon and her husband, divide their time between Oregon and Hawaii. They have two grown children.
Currently, Sharon is encouraging others via her inspirational blog, but prefers sharing face to face. Additionally, she is working towards a degree in Ministry.
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