Daily Devotional: Psalms 84:5-8
5 Blessed are those whose strength is in you, who have set their hearts on pilgrimage. 6 As they pass through the Valley of Baca, they make it a place of springs; the autumn rains also cover it with pools. 7 They go from strength to strength, till each appears before God in Zion. 8 Hear my prayer, O LORD God Almighty; listen to me, O God of Jacob. Selah
7 Accept one another, then, just as Christ accepted you, in order to bring praise to God. 8 For I tell you that Christ has become a servant of the Jews on behalf of God's truth, to confirm the promises made to the patriarchs 9 so that the Gentiles may glorify God for his mercy, as it is written: "Therefore I will praise you among the Gentiles; I will sing hymns to your name."
Once each year the Jews would travel from where they lived to Jerusalem to worship God. It was at this time the High Priest would offer a sacrifice for the sins of the people which had been committed in ignorance. This was a festive occasion as the people celebrated having been forgiven and thus, made right with God. For many it was a long, hard and dangerous journey. Most traveled on foot or rode a donkey, while carrying provisions for the trip. It required faith and endurance.
We have become so accustomed to our modes of travel and the comfort of our church buildings that it would be difficult for us to imagine anyone actually doing this to worship God. While we can worship anywhere and anytime, we find our true strength when we come together and enjoy the fellowship in song, in prayer and in studying his word. We are encouraged when we partake together of his body and blood as we commune with the bread and fruit of the vine.
It is in coming together that we are reminded that we are the body of Christ and that we are truly one in him. Our fellowship emphasizes our unity as we seek to know our Father and do his will. While we have the continual forgiveness by the blood of Jesus, we celebrate together as we worship and praise him as our God and Father and Jesus as our Lord, our Savior and as our brother and friend.
Heavenly Father I am so thankful for your plan for us to assemble together as we worship you and as we study your word. Help me always remember that each service is about you and proclaiming your majesty and not about satisfying some fleshly appetite on my part. Give me a spirit of celebration each time your church is assembled and we praise you as God. Thank you for your grace and forgiveness that I have in Jesus Christ. Never let me forget who you are as God and who I am as your creation. Lord be with our nation and give us leaders who respect you as God and will follow your wisdom. I humbly pray in the name of Jesus.