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Briefing: Where is your writing pen listed on the force continuum? Just because it is small and overlooked does not mean it is not capable of doing a lot of damage. Writing an offense report can have a significant impact on people’s lives. Don’t dismiss this psalm because of its size.

Dispatch (Assignment): Read Psalm 117 and write down the gifts and talents you have in your life.

On the Street: “Praise the Lord, all you nations; extol Him, all you peoples. For great is His love toward us, and the faithfulness of the Lord endures forever.” That is Psalm 117. It is the shortest chapter in the Bible. It is followed by Psalm 118 which is the exact center of the Bible, followed by Psalm 119, the longest chapter in the Bible. Can there be any doubt God is the God of order?

This may be the shortest chapter in the Bible but, the message is hugely significant. The goal of the church is to glorify God. Like we touched on in the last chapter, Psalm 116:12, the only thing we can give God is praise. Once I understood this, it gave me a fresh perspective on Psalms. How often have we read, “Praise the LORD” or “Hallelujah” and passed over it like they were just meaningless words? These are not just meaningless words.

There are quite a few ways to give praise to the LORD. When we praise Him, we glorify Him. Eric Liddell was a sprinter in the 1924 Olympics and a missionary to China. Eric was quoted as saying, “When I run, I can feel God’s glory”. That is praise to God. It is worth noting that Eric’s race was the 100-yard sprint but because the heats were held on Sunday, he withdrew from the race. He decided to run in the 400-meter race. He won the race and set an Olympic record. When interviewed by the BBC Eric said, “The secret of my success over the 400m is that I run the first 200m as fast as I can. Then, for the second 200m, with God’s help I run faster.”

There are all kinds of ways we glorify and praise God. Just like Eric Liddell, God has gifted each one of us. It may be in athletics, arts, or music. There are gifts of encouragement, leadership, management, serving, teaching, and wisdom. There is an abundance of gifts that come from God. Our assignment is to find what gifts He has given us and to use them for His glory.

Take the list you were asked to write from the Dispatch (Assignment), inventorying the gifts and talents you have. Now, next to each gift write how you could use this gift to glorify God.

Going back and reading these two verses again, we can see the call to praise God because we are blessed by Him. He blesses us by loving us and being faithful to us. It is a simple, two-line psalm but I think we have seen that God works in the simple as well as the complicated. Glory to God!

Investigational Resources: Habakkuk 2:14, Psalm 69:30, John 17:4, Matthew 5:16.

Officer Safety Principle: Look for ways to praise and glorify God. Make a conscious effort to openly glorify God at least once per day.

from Psalms Through the Eyes of a Cop, Volume 2
©by Charles Gilliland. Used by permission.
Click here to check out the entire Through the Eyes of a Cop series!