I have worshipped in some very diverse places – beautiful sanctuaries with stained glass, old wooden churches, on mountain tops, at the beach, convention centers, the National Mall in Washington DC, even the old RFK stadium in the same city. And in each place, I am reminded how the setting helped me see something about God.
For example, the beach gives a beautiful picture that each wave erases the marks left on the sand – how God’s mercies are new every morning.
Old wooden churches remind me of faithfulness of God in remote places and with faithful saints through the years.
Stained glass sanctuaries point out the artistic nature and colorful work of God in creation.
The National Mall had almost a million men gathered in 1997. It was a powerful image that made me think of heaven, from every tribe and every nation. Throngs will be gathered around the throne.
We’ve been walking through the Ascent Psalms. It is important to remind ourselves that these Psalms are a journey into worship.
Mount Zion is just outside of Jerusalem. Can you imagine seeing the mountains and being reminded of God’s steadfastness and unshakeableness? Like the mountains, God surrounds us and will always be there. It is a reminder that it is His city and always will be. And that we are His people and always will be.
So look around when you worship. What lesson does the location share with us?
Look around all the time. God can be seen everywhere.
Those who trust in the Lord are like Mount Zion,
which cannot be moved, but abides forever.
As the mountains surround Jerusalem,
so the Lord surrounds his people,
from this time forth and forevermore.
For the scepter of wickedness shall not rest
on the land allotted to the righteous,
lest the righteous stretch out
their hands to do wrong.
Do good, O Lord, to those who are good,
and to those who are upright in their hearts!
But those who turn aside to their crooked ways
the Lord will lead away with evildoers!
Peace be upon Israel!