Saturday, 22 October 2011

Ultimate Rest

How lovely is your dwelling place,
O LORD Almighty!
My soul yearns, even faints,
for the courts of the LORD;
my heart and my flesh cry out
for the living God.
Even the sparrow has found a home,
and the swallow a nest for herself,
where she may have her young—
a place near your altar,
O LORD Almighty, my King and my God.
Blessed are those who dwell in your house;
they are ever praising you.
Blessed are those whose strength is in you,
who have set their hearts on pilgrimage.
As they pass through the Valley of Baca,
they make it a place of springs;
the autumn rains also cover it with pools.
They go from strength to strength,
till each appears before God in Zion.
Hear my prayer, O LORD God Almighty;
listen to me, O God of Jacob.
Look upon our shield, O God;
look with favor on your anointed one.
Better is one day in your courts
than a thousand elsewhere;
I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God
than dwell in the tents of the wicked.
For the LORD God is a sun and shield;
the LORD bestows favor and honor;
no good thing does he withhold
from those whose walk is blameless.
O LORD Almighty,
blessed is the man who trusts in you. (Psalm 84).

One of my all-time favorite Psalms. Simply beautiful. I kinda miss the longing I used to have, like how I felt what the psalmist experienced. I envy the sparrows and the swallows who are free to be what they are.....

My heart has been set on a journey of a pilgrim, seeking for the ultimate rest, the ultimate beauty. Resting in Your presence, I now understand, is a process of walking through life valleys, not sitting idly. When I pass through Baca (weeping), I'm not supposed to pray for it to be taken away, but to convert my adversities into resourcefulness, so that I'd leave wellsprings of life to bless other thirsty travelers who'd pass through where I'm walking.

How is it that the psalmist can say that it's better to spend one tiny moment in the courts than eternity elsewhere? Is it true such joy can be found? How do I find my ultimate calling like that doorkeeper in Your house? I'd be honored even to be the least of the servants in my King's house.

I'm convinced and persuaded that true religion is about being set free and setting others free. Just like true fasting comes with loosening of chains, untying of cords and setting the oppressed free. But why do I feel chains around my neck and weights on my shoulders? Whose yoke is that? Why do I feel dangerous?

I've not forgotten the dream of the beautiful, bright-colored birds in formation and perfect unison. Dancing in peaceful harmony in one instance, and turning into mean, deadly warring weapons in the next. All in a smooth, seamless transition. All as one unit. All following the voice of one. It was almost forgotten......but still not lost.

Now, if only I can be set free from my inner cage....

Let Your easy autumn rain begins to fall on my holes and emptiness again, where I walk...fill them up to be pools of abundance. Lets see what life this spring can bring...

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