As far back as memory allows this Psalm has brought me peace and joyful expectation of the time when my dwelling place will eternally be “in the house of the Lord.”
First came the peace upon reading it; I think I was still a child.
Later came the knowledge of the free gift of God’s grace and salvation through acceptance of Jesus.
Still later I enjoy the benefits of living with Jesus as my center, the center of my world, my focus, my purpose, my life. Jesus is the true North that never changes; even when the world changes, even when my thoughts and emotions and my deeds change. His presence in the house of the Lord is my Eternal goal.
The steps leading up to the temple of God in Jerusalem were, each one, a step of higher commitment. Each dusty stone step was carpeted with praises to the most high God. The Psalms of praise were sung, the people’s voices mingled, and the praises carried the songsters upward with joy and the anticipation of closeness with God, Abba, Father. I imagine the stately palms surrounding the temple, perhaps all around Jerusalem, swaying majestically, offering Creation’s communal agreement of glory to God.
Eternal peace within the house of the Lord is possible. There, is promised, the priceless opportunity to gaze upon the most beautiful and pure face ever born, and the invitation to “enquire” of Him, to learn from God, perhaps sitting at His feet, as did Martha’s sister, Mary, even here on earth.
Steffany Gretzinger sings “Forever Amen” precisely describing how I was made to love God, from “my beginning to my end.”
You may be just at the beginning, perhaps well along on the journey, trudging sandy steps, slipping wearily now and then, or nearing the summit of the temple entrance. But you and I are still singing God’s praises! I am nearing the summit, my body’s temple beginning to wear down, but my spirit filled with heavenly yearnings for more of God, more glory to God.
Our lives are divinely designed to teach us to love God from the beginning of our journey up the steps of His temple to life’s completion inside its glorious entrance.
Life’s fair and beautiful end is found in the presence of the Holy One in His dwelling place. There we will be found, seated at His feet, gazing adoringly into His eyes, at peace and in love in the presence of the Holy One.
Glory be to God.