Did you notice the different versions of the same Bible passage we used as last month’s meditation to open our Sunday morning worship service? In Psalm 100:4-5 we read (New Revised Standard Version):
“Enter his gates with thanksgiving, and his courts with praise! Give thanks to him, bless his name! For the LORD is good; his steadfast love endures forever, and his faithfulness to all generations.”
(New International Version)
“Enter his gates with thanksgiving and his courts with praise; give thanks to him and praise his name. For the LORD is good and his love endures forever; his faithfulness continues through all generations.”
(The Message Translation)
“Enter with the password: “Thank you!” Make yourselves at home, talking praise. Thank him. Worship him. For God is sheer beauty, all-generous in love, loyal always and ever.”
(New King James Version)
“Enter into His gates with thanksgiving, And into His courts with praise. Be thankful to Him, and bless His name. For the Lord is good; His mercy is everlasting, And His truth endures to all generations.”
Perhaps one of the translations resonates with you more than the others? The themes about entering, giving thanks, praising God, God’s goodness, and of God being forever faithful are plain to see. I hope we all find them to be a source of comfort. They also serve as a reminder of how and why we gather together on Sunday mornings. Amidst our busy Summer schedules, the discipline of coming together to enter into worship and thanksgiving is what keeps our church “body” healthy and strong. For many it can be a source of strength and hope. But for some, we are weary and our Sunday morning worship has become more of a duty than a delight.
If you find yourself weary, I’d love the opportunity to chat with you and understand your situation. I recognize that church is not always the place of safety and rest that we’d like it to be. Will you share your story with me? It’s of vital importance that we present ourselves in honest ways. For when we do, we’ll be able to present “his faithfulness to all generations.”
I love you all, Aaron Goodro
PS: Click on August SPIRE 2013 to read about what is happening at the church this month!