So, join me in kneeling before the Lord on this beautiful Sunday morning while I share a meditation I received yesterday from High Calling Blogs. Psalm 117 is the shortest Psalm, and it's one of my favorites--after Psalm 119, that is--the longest Psalm. Written by Mark D. Roberts, it's just the reminder I need after a busy and worrisome week. I hope that you enjoy it, too. If you would prefer reading it on the website rather than here, you may do so: Reflection of Psalm 117.
Psalm 117 is a simple, short call to worship. It is directed, not only at the people of Israel, but at “all you nations” (117:1). It calls all people on earth to worship and then provides the reason for this summons: “For [the Lord] loves us with an unfailing love; the LORD’s faithfulness endures forever. Praise the LORD!” (117:2).Today's Collect from the 1928 Book of Common Prayer:
Every now and then, you and I need a basic reminder of why we worship God. To be sure, there are nuances of worship that deserve extensive development. But Psalm 117 brings us back to the center of worship. Why should we praise the Lord? Because his love for us is unfailing and his faithfulness never ends.
Notice that worship is not something that begins with us. It’s not something we rev up in our own souls. Rather, worship begins with God, with his love and faithfulness. Our worship is always a response to God’s initiative and grace. Most of all, it responds to what God has done for us through Jesus Christ. In him we see and experience God’s unfailing love and enduring faithfulness.
Thus, Christian worship is always flavored by the Gospel, the reminder of what God has done in Christ. Whether singing songs of praise, offering prayers, listening to the Word preached, or coming to the Lord’s table, we do so as a grateful response to the love and faithfulness of God in Christ.
QUESTIONS FOR REFLECTION:
When have you experienced God’s unfailing love? When have you experienced his faithfulness? How do the love and faithfulness of God help you to worship?
Gracious God, how wonderful you are to me. I have tasted of your unfailing love, your love that never lets me go. And I have experienced your faithfulness again and again. Yes, indeed, I ought to praise you because you have been so good to me.
Most of all, I praise you for your love and faithfulness given through Christ. How marvelous is your grace, O God! How amazing your love! How rock-solid your faithfulness!
May my worship, whether I’m alone or gathered with others, always be a right response to who you are and what you have done. Amen.
ALMIGHTY God, who showest to them that are in error the light of thy truth, to the intent that they may return into the way of righteousness; Grant unto all those who are admitted into the fellowship of Christ's Religion, that they may avoid those things that are contrary to their profession, and follow all such things as are agreeable to the same; through our Lord Jesus Christ. Amen.May you be blessed on this Lord's Day, you--my friends--who kindly and ever-so-patiently read my poems, ponderings, and Meditative Meanderings. I am grateful for each and every one of you, this day and always.