I was glad when they said to me, "Let us go to the house of the Lord. Our feet are standing within your gates, O Jerusalem." Psalm 122:1-2
Psalm 122 is a hymn of joy over Jerusalem, sung by one who delights for having joined the pilgrimage to the city. It expresses the psalmist's deep joy over the city and his prayer for its welfare. As he journeys from whence he has come, he is called as a worshiper to be a part of the annual festival throng in Jerusalem. He is called to the temple, the house of the Lord.
Think about the last time you were excited about going somewhere. The anticipation of going somewhere special is a great feeling, isn't it? I very much enjoy high school football, and I am looking forward to the game tonight. I know that I will congregate with many other fans excited to be there. I will cheer on our team and enjoy my Friday night under the lights as the band plays the fight song, the team bursts through the huge banner to take the field, and the announcer roars, "Are 'ya ready for some football?"
In Psalm 122, the psalmist expresses gladness in anticipation of going to the house of the Lord. Do you look forward to your Sunday morning journey to the temple? Is it because of the great music, studying the Word, or inspiring preaching? Worship is all of that, and more, but it is also a time to draw near to God as a body of believers. It is a time to enter a sacred space, apart from the world with its frantic pace, to pray, reflect, and seek God's grace.
Heed the call and journey to the temple with happy feet, dancing as part of a festival throng! Listen to God's voice, saying, "Come away with me. Come away."
Prayer for Today
Lord, help us to anticipate with gladness the next time we will go to the house of the Lord. Let our visits be frequent, and let our love for you grow as we congregate for worship. Amen.