November 2020

“This is my resting place for ever; here I will make my home,
for such is my desire”
Psalm 132.14 (NEB)
Psalm 132 is one of the psalms which are noted as ‘Songs of Ascents’ or songs
of pilgrimage (Psalms 120 to 134), thought to have been used during the yearly
pilgrimage to Jerusalem. These songs of pilgrimage appear to be arranged in
such a way that the opening psalms deal with the diculties that might be
found on a long journey when far from the comforts and safety of home. On
the journey the pilgrims are deeply aware that God is continually caring for
them; nally the entry into the Temple at Jerusalem, the purpose of the long
journey, is achieved:
“Come bless the Lord, all you servants of the Lord, who stand night after night
in the house of the Lord. Lift up your hands in the sanctuary and bless the Lord”
(Psalm 134)
As well as the Temple in Jerusalem being God's home, we also acknowledge
the truth that we ourselves, physically and spiritually, are temples, places where
God's spirit dwells (1Cor 3.16,17) “Do you not know that you are God's temple
and that God's spirit dwells in you...for God's temple is holy and that temple
you are”. The more this becomes heart knowledge, the more clearly you will
see that this Word is for every human, for every scrap of this planet and every
planet, and for the vastness of space. Everyone and everything are “my
This truth will impel us to do the work of intercession and thanksgiving -
allowing God to channel his Word through us, letting ourselves be caught up in
God's desire for the wellbeing of everyone and everything. So our task is to
channel the Word to all; to share the spirit and life of the Word wherever we
nd ourselves; to saturate all that is good and true; and to rejoice in recognising
that the Word is being fullled in countless people and places.
These could be Watchwords that you select from the full version of this Saying
... ‘my resting place’ ; ‘my home’ ; ‘my desire’ .
In future you may well discover that the Temple language of the psalms will
also take on new meaning for you. Such words are both humbling and exalting
and much loved in our contemplative prayer.