I’ve always found the command to “let the word of Christ dwell in you richly” of Colossians 3:16 fascinating and profoundly encouraging. God wouldn’t command something impossible for us to achieve which means the word of Christ can dwell in us richly. What a thought!
If it can dwell in us richly, the next logical question is how? We simply need to keep reading the verse to see: “teaching and admonishing one another in all wisdom, singing psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, with thankfulness in your hearts to God.” Speaking God’s Word one to another is a way for Christ’s word to dwell in us, and so is singing a variety of faith-shaping songs. The Psalms are included. And yet, how many of the Psalms do I know how to sing? (An embarrassingly low number!)
It was easier for ancient Israel to sing the Psalms. After all, they were more intertwined in the community of God’s people and were in their mother-tongue. Israelites would have not only known the lyrics, they would have known common tunes associated with each psalm. That puts many of us in the 21st century at a huge disadvantage as it comes to letting the word of Christ dwell richly in us by singing the psalms.
That’s one reason I’m glad Shane Heilman has dedicated much of his life to The Psalms Project. His ultimate goal is to set all of the 150 Psalms to song word-for-word, and he does a fantastic job. While many with such a grand goal would start strong and burnout easily; it seems like Shane is only gaining more momentum and skill in his quest. Case in point: Shane recently quit his job as a high school teacher and is putting the Psalms to music full-time. And the quality of the songs only get better, which isn’t to say that any previous songs were lacking quality!
Adding The Psalms Project to your music rotation will help the word of Christ dwell in you richly and remind you of the rich theological and emotional landscape we find in the Psalter.
For those new to the Psalms Project, here are a few links to get started along with some favorite songs.
- Get a FREE Volume 1: Psalms 1-10 CD from The Psalms Project (just pay shipping)
- Get 2 Full Album Downloads from The Psalms Project for $2
- Listen to The Psalms Project on Your Preferred Streaming Platform (Spotify, Apple Music, Amazon Music, YouTube)
Some of My Favorite Psalms
Psalm 32 – my current favorite
Psalm 25 – one of the most popular songs
Psalm 29 – one of Shane’s favorites
Psalm 42 – the newest release
Or listen to several songs on this livestream concert recording:
My hope is that by sharing this recommendation you will rejoice in our God more by letting His words shape your heart and mind through the Psalms.
 In When Prayer Is a Struggle, I call the Psalms “the emotional soundtrack of God’s worshipping people.”
 Thanks to Shane for giving my book a shout-out!