A Joyous Journey

my heart leaped for joy.
And now we’re here, O Jerusalem,
inside Jerusalem’s walls!
Jerusalem, well-built city,
built as a place for worship!
The city to which the tribes ascend,
all God’s tribes go up to worship,
To give thanks to the name of God —
this is what it means to be Israel.
Thrones for righteous judgment
are set there, famous David-thrones.
Pray for Jerusalem’s peace!
Prosperity to all you Jerusalem-lovers!
Friendly insiders, get along!
Hostile outsiders, keep your distance!
For the sake of my family and friends,
I say it again: live in peace!
For the sake of the house of our God, God,
I’ll do my very best for you.
Psalm 122 (MSG)

I’m on my way
Driving at 90 down those country lanes
Singing to “Tiny Dancer”
And I miss the way you make me feel, and it’s real
We watched the sunset over the castle on the hill
Castle on the Hill” by Ed Sheeran

My dog Shade loved my mother in law. She was one of Shade’s favorite people. It didn’t hurt that my mother in law was known to spoil her almost as much as our daughter (almost). You could say that Shade was awfully close to being her second granddaughter.

Any time we went to visit my wife’s folks, we would take Shade with us. Shade traveled really well and mostly slept. However, when we turned onto the in law’s street, Shade would start whining. She was getting excited because she knew where we were going and couldn’t wait to get there.

I don’t know what Shade was thinking as we finished the drive, but at the very least, she knew it was a wonderful place filled with the people who loved her, and also treats.

We should feel the same way about going to join with God’s people to worship His name and fellowship together. Like the Psalmist here, the knowledge of the gathering of God’s people should be a moment of rejoicing.

While attending a weekly worship service is particularly important, we should also be seeking out other opportunities to join in community with other Christians. Unlike the Jews of the bible, we do not have to journey to Jerusalem to seek the presence of God. We just have to join together. As Jesus said, “Where ever two or more are gathered in my name, there I will be,” (Matthew 18:20).

Take some time to day to remember your faith-family in prayer. Thank God for them and lift up any needs of theirs that you are aware of. Pray for the strength of Christ’s body here on earth.

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Gary Oswald

A writer, blogger, bookish person and productivity geek. My interests range from creativity, travel, photography, poetry, to theology and philosophy.