Dear Pastor, Preacher, or Bible Teacher –
Strange time, isn’t it? I don’t think many of us have ever experienced something like this before. All our normal routines have changed, and most all of us are doing church over the internet if at all. We’re preaching to empty rooms and video cameras, and trying to connect with people the best we can. As God may lead us, we’re trying new things and trying to figure out how to help God’s people and a needy world.
I won’t pretend to have “Gods’ word for this time.” I think there is a lot that God is doing in this season, and God will probably move in some ways that we may have no idea of at the moment.
So, let me suggest one thing to pay attention to: God has us in a Selah Season.
You know that word Selah, don’t you? Selah appears 74 times in the Old Testament – 71 times in the Psalms and 3 times in Habakkuk. The idea in the Hebrew for this word is a pause. Some think that this was a musical instruction, perhaps calling for a musical interlude of some kind. But most scholars think Selah speaks of a reflective pause, a pause to meditate on the words just spoken. Maybe it was both – “meditate on these words while you listen to this music.”
Right now, many of us are in a forced “pause” – a Selah. You weren’t looking for it, but here it is. So, let’s Selah – and look at a few places in the Psalms where we are told to pause, and to think about something.
Pause for confident praise: Psalm 44:8
In God we boast all day long,
And praise Your name forever. Selah
Pause for assurance of God’s presence: Psalm 46:7
The LORD of hosts is with us;
The God of Jacob is our refuge. Selah
Pause to find your shelter in God: Psalm 32:7
You are my hiding place;
You shall preserve me from trouble;
You shall surround me with songs of deliverance. Selah
Pause to realize that we are weak and that life is short: Psalm 39:4-6
LORD, make me to know my end,
And what is the measure of my days,
That I may know how frail I am.
Indeed, You have made my days as handbreadths,
And my age is as nothing before You;
Certainly every man at his best state is but vapor. Selah
Pause for unshakable confidence: Psalm 46:1-3
God is our refuge and strength,
A very present help in trouble.
Therefore we will not fear,
Even though the earth be removed,
And though the mountains be carried into the midst of the sea;
Though its waters roar and be troubled,
Though the mountains shake with its swelling. Selah
Pause to consider the assurance of our resurrection: Psalm 49:15
But God will redeem my soul from the power of the grave,
For He shall receive me. Selah
You can keep going on your own. Take time to pause, and there’s no better place to take a pause than where God tells you to. Meditate on the Selahs in the Psalms.
Blessings to You in Jesus’ Name – David Guzik