We all face challenges in life at one time or another, and as Christians, we are not exempt. In fact, some may argue that we devout Christians undergo harder trials and tribulations.
This was the case with one of my fellow church members last week. He was downcast after losing his job and facing financial challenges.
As a theologian well-versed with the Book of Psalms, I was delighted to share the Psalms for encouragement with him. I am writing this article for those of you who may also need encouragement to brave through tough times.
7 Psalms for encouragement during hard times
Psalm 40: 1-3
“I waited patiently for the Lord; he turned to me and heard my cry. He lifted me out of the slimy pit, out of the mud and mire; he set my feet on a rock and gave me a firm place to stand. He put a new song in my mouth, a hymn of praise to our God. Many will see and fear the Lord and put their trust in him.”
In these verses, the Psalmist, in the midst of despair and suffering, cries out to the Lord and waits patiently for Him, and the Lord hears his cry and rescues him from misery.
These verses paint a picture of a Lord who hears.
Psalm 120: 1
“I call on the Lord in my distress, and he answers me. Save me, Lord, from lying lips and from deceitful tongues. What will he do to you, and what more besides, you deceitful tongue? He will punish you with a warrior’s sharp arrows, with burning coals of the broom bush.”
This verse serves as a reminder that whenever we are in trouble, we can always turn to the Lord for help, as opposed to solely carrying our troubles on our already burdened shoulders.
Psalm 91: 14 -16
“Whoever dwells in the shelter of the Most High will rest in the shadow of the Almighty. I will say of the Lord, “He is my refuge and my fortress, my God, in whom I trust.” Surely he will save you from the fowler’s snare and from the deadly pestilence. He will cover you with his feathers, and under his wings you will find refuge; his faithfulness will be your shield and rampart. You will not fear the terror of night, nor the arrow that flies by day, nor the pestilence that stalks in the darkness, nor the plague that destroys at midday.”
These verses speak on the promises of God to those who love Him. What sticks out in these verses is that God promises to rescue and protect those who love and trust in His name. He promises to be with them in times of trouble and to answer when they call on Him.
Psalm 55: 22
“Listen to my prayer, O God, do not ignore my plea; hear me and answer me. My thoughts trouble me and I am distraught because of what my enemy is saying, because of the threats of the wicked; for they bring down suffering on me and assail me in their anger.”
In this verse, David emphasizes the need to cast your burdens to the Lord fully because He is more capable than any human being to handle these troubles.
This verse shows us that peace is possible, even in the hardest of storms.
Psalm 18: 6- 19
“I love you, Lord, my strength. The Lord is my rock, my fortress and my deliverer; my God is my rock, in whom I take refuge, my shield and the horn of my salvation, my stronghold. I called to the Lord, who is worthy of praise, and I have been saved from my enemies. The cords of death entangled me; the torrents of destruction overwhelmed me. The cords of the grave coiled around me; the snares of death confronted me.”
These verses assure us that our cries for help reach the Lord’s ears and that He indeed hears us. The Psalmist is filled with joy because the Lord reached down from Heaven and rescued Him from deep waters.
Psalm 46: 1-11
“God is our refuge and strength, an ever-present help in trouble. Therefore we will not fear, though the earth give way and the mountains fall into the heart of the sea, though its waters roar and foam and the mountains quake with their surging.”
This Psalm encourages us to be still and put our trust in the Lord because He is a very present help in our times of trouble. In this chapter, we are told that the Lord is among us and is our fortress.
Psalm 118: 5-7
“Give thanks to the Lord, for he is good; his love endures forever. Let Israel say: “His love endures forever.” Let the house of Aaron say: “His love endures forever.” Let those who fear the Lord say: ‘His love endures forever.'”
These verses urge us not to fear because the Lord is on our side. They encourage us to pray to the Lord when in distress to be set free.
They put emphasis on the fact that with God on our side, no man can do us harm.
Why Are They Called Psalms of Encouragement?
They are called Psalms of encouragement because they convey a message of hope and deliverance from the depths of trouble and despair.
They give us hope to keep praying, trusting, and waiting on the Lord to help us in times of trouble. These psalms help uplift spirits by showing the troubles David experienced firsthand and how he leaned on God for help in his times of need.
Psalms like Psalm 34:4-5 offer proof that when we call on the Lord in times of need, He will deliver us from all our fears. They give us hope for better days based on the Psalmist’s experiences.
Can You Read the Psalms of Encouragement to Anyone?
Yes, you can read Psalms of encouragement to anyone, from the ones who are anxious or worrisome to the ones who need comfort and protection or even people who are burdened with troubles and are on the verge of giving up.
Psalms of encouragement are the perfect message to urge them to keep loving and trusting in God and to never lose hope.
Can You Read the Psalms of Encouragement for Someone in the Hospital?
Yes, being in the hospital doesn’t only take a toll on a person physically; it also takes a huge toll on their mental health, and these people may become depressed or lose hope of healing.
This can deter their healing process even more, so such people will benefit greatly from Psalms of encouragement, such as Psalms 103: 2-4, where David declares that the Lord forgives all his sins and heals all his diseases.
Can You Read the Psalms of Encouragement for Someone Who Lost a Loved One?
Yes, losing a loved one is such a traumatic experience and can be very devastating. People who are grieving require extra encouragement and love enable them to bear the heavy burden they are facing.
Psalms such as Psalm 34: 18 and Psalm 22: 24 are great verses to read to people who’ve lost a loved one.
As a theologian, I have always been curious to learn more about the Christian Faith. That is why I pursued a Certificate in Christian Studies, Certificate in Christian Foundations and a Masters in Theology. I also have an immersive experience in editing for numerous websites. I have worked as an editor for over a decade and am currently the editor-in-chief at Christian Faith Guide. I enjoy working as an editor and feel privileged to share my expertise and help spread God’s word. You can read more about me on the about us page.