Praying the Psalms helps us learn to pay attention. We begin to pay attention to the brokenness in our world through lament, to brokenness in ourselves through self examination and confession, and to the full spectrum of our honest emotions in the presence of God (joy, anger, despair, contentment, loneliness, etc). We also learn to pay attention to God’s goodness and saving power in our lives through gratitude, memory, and praise. In paying attention like the Psalms, we can begin to notice and nurture the work of God in us and others.
“The psalms make us uncomfortable because they don’t allow us to deny either the depth of our pain or the possibility of its transformation into praise.”
– Kathleen Norris