Week 43 Let Us Be Eager To Go To Church

By Elizabeth Yeamans Simrell (Guest Blogger)

 Week 43

Scripture Readings: Psalms 122-124

Key Scripture Verses: Psalm 122: 1, 6 (NIV, Life Application Bible)

“I rejoiced with those who said to me, ‘Let us go to the house of the Lord.’”

“Pray for the peace of Jerusalem: ‘May those who love you be secure.”

 Psalm 122 was written by David, a man of great faith and devotion to God. His attitude of rejoicing at the idea of going to Jerusalem with others, likely for a religious festival, shows his delight in his worship. His delight reflects his devotion and his love for God.

David describes Jerusalem as a place closely put together in a compact way, where the masses would gather to praise God. It was a holy place.

 And as he talks about worship there, he then prays for the people. He prays that the people will enjoy the “peace of Jerusalem,” meaning the peace of trust in God, the peace of security within his care. He prays for peace among the people and within Jerusalem itself, “within its walls.” He prays for the people, that they would enjoy the blessings of God’s love and prosperity.

Jerusalem was a sanctuary to the Israelites—a place of worship and fellowship with God and with other faithful believers. Our churches should be our Jerusalem—a place where we are eager to go, eager to be with other Christians, where we are eager to worship Christ, have fellowship with like-minded disciples, and pray for one another.

As David did, we should approach church with a prayerful attitude, asking Jesus to bless those within our church, within the body of Christ. We should pray for one another that all should enjoy the peace of the Holy Trinity, the peace that comes through faith and knowledge of the truth. We should pray for the peace within the walls of our physical churches and among those who worship there. We should consider our churches to be holy places where we reverently honor our God in praise and worship, a place where the love of Jesus is abundantly shared.

May we rejoice in the very thought of going to our churches to worship Jesus among other faithful believers. May we develop in faith that we might have such joy!

 

By Paul Simrell

The Reverend Paul W. Simrell has served for over thirty years in a variety of congregational and institutional settings. He is a recognized minister with standing in the Virginia region of the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) in the United States and Canada and is nationally endorsed by the Christian Church (Disciples of Christ) for specialized ministry in both pastoral counseling and chaplaincy. Ordained in 1982, he has served congregations in Kentucky, Texas, Florida, and Virginia. He currently serves as the pastor of Elpis Christian Church, a small, historic congregation located just a few miles west of Richmond, Virginia. “Elpis” is the Greek word for “expectant hope.” He is a graduate of the University of Florida and Lexington Theological Seminary and has done advanced clinical training in chaplaincy and pastoral counseling at the University of Kentucky Medical Center in Lexington, Kentucky, Children’s Medical Center and Parkland Hospital in Dallas, Texas and the Virginia Institute of Pastoral Care in Richmond, Virginia. He is a Certified Pastoral Counselor, an ACPE Practitioner, a member of the American Association of Christian Counselors, and a member of Spiritual Directors International. He is a Certified Facilitator of the Prepare-Enrich relationship assessment and skills-building program and served as a volunteer chaplain for over twenty years with the CJW Medical Center campuses in Richmond, Virginia. His avocational interests include playing the piano and drawing. He is very happily married to his wife Elizabeth Yeamans Simrell, a free-lance writer, who is also a Certified Facilitator for the Prepare-Enrich program. Good company in a journey makes the way seem shorter. — Izaak Walton

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