Can’t we all just get along?
Psalm 133: How wonderful, how beautiful, when brothers and sisters get along!
Here’s one of those “praise chorus” length psalms, just a few sentences long. It’s another of those songs sung by the pilgrims as they make their way up to Jerusalem to worship at the Temple. The topic of this short chorus is “unity.” I can just imagine a family making their way to Jerusalem to worship. Maybe the kids are a little tired and irritable and start picking on one another. Mom and dad start singing this song about getting along! Not only that, but as they journey to Jerusalem the pilgrims anticipate not only worship, but the deep fellowship they will enjoy with their fellow worshipers. They’ve come from the four corners of their country to worship together and that’s a beautiful thing. In this dry, arid land, the imagery of the first High Priest, Aaron, being anointed with and overabundance of oil sounds refreshing to them, so they use that image and the picture of abundant dew falling on the parched ground to describe the refreshment they feel in their souls as they join God’s people in worship. As we go through our weeks, dealing with everything life throws at us, we too anticipate the time we have with our brothers and sisters in Christ. That, too, is refreshing to our souls.
Take Away: it’s a beautiful thing when God’s people get together in harmony.
Heaven will surely be worth it all
Psalm 84: These roads curve up the mountain, and at the last turn — Zion!
The psalmist is thinking about journeying to Jerusalem to worship at the Temple. Oh how the pilgrim looks forward to being in the Temple of God. He can’t help but think of how blest are those whose serve in that place day by day. However, there’s more than even that here. The song writer finds himself thinking about people who are living their lives in the Lord, journeying with him along the dusty roads and through the lonesome valleys of life. Not that there aren’t some blest times along the way because there are some “cool springs” that refresh the weary traveler. Then, there’s one last mountain to climb, one last curve to navigate; and then Zion comes into view. That “lonesome valley” journey is quickly forgotten as beautiful Zion is seen. What a powerful picture he’s painted. Today, I thank God for walking with me on my life journey. I thank him for the blessings of cool springs along the way and for his faithfulness to me even in the lonesome valleys. For me, and for most of us, the blessings far outnumber the trials. But whether or not that is true for you in particular we all have this hope: one of these days we’ll climb that last mountain and round the final curve and our Zion will come into view. As the old gospel song says, “Heaven will surely be worth it all.”
Take Away: We are a people with hope; hope both in this world and in the world to come.