Psalm 122 (Psalms on the Trail)

Psalm 122

“I was glad when they said to me,

‘Let us to go to house of the Lord!'” Psalm 122:1

The psalmist was glad to be on his way, a pilgrimage of sorts, to the Temple in Jerusalem which was built on a hill.  Likewise the church in this photo is on a hill in Harper’s Ferry, WV, overlooking the Potomac River with thousands of AT hikers walking past it in any given season.  Most hikers are glad to be in Harper’s Ferry for a good meal, a resupply, a check-in at the AT Conservancy Headquarters/Visitors Center, to wander through the John Brown Museum and maybe catch the commuter train into Washington DC for a couple days off-trail.  Few hikers think to go inside this church.

Of course there is no more Jerusalem temple and a church building is really not the “house of the Lord.”  A gathering of people is the house of the Lord where in community God moves and works and sends people into a hurting world with words and acts of hope and healing in the name of Christ.

I just want to say that I have been truly glad, delighted, eager to be on my way to the house of the Lord (gathering of people) where God has called me to preach among other things.  Now, don’t get me wrong, there are seasons where cranking out sermons has been really, really hard—much of this past year, in fact.  But either God has been changing me the last few months or God is changing the congregation and there is a renewed stirring of mission and energy and focus.  Last Sunday I didn’t even use notes for the message (and that’s not any kind of recommendation, just a statement that something is different.) The stories we’ve been listening to from Acts are powerful where the Holy Spirit  makes all sorts of things happen and the followers of Jesus try new things.  It’s hard to listen and sit still.  Energy is sparking up here and there in our gathering of worshipers.  Ideas for mission are flowing and possibilities are opening. Sounds like the Holy Spirit, doesn’t it? Well, today is Pentecost after all.  “I was glad when they said to me…..”  (But just for the record, I still cherish those quieter Sundays where the Spirit moves slow and deep.)


1. Take this verse with you and ponder its meaning for you throughout the day.  What makes you glad about being with the gathering of God’s people? Where do you sense God’s energy?

2. Or read the whole psalm to find out how this verse fits into the whole.

3. Or comment with a photo of your own that is a window of this psalm’s meaning for you.

The next post will be on Psalm 123:2-3.

Starting January 1, 2016, for 150 days I am posting a daily psalm verse with a photo that is a visual meditation on the text for me.  Each day a verse from the next psalm is chosen until all 150 psalms have been featured.   To participate you may subscribe to my blog at or “friend” me on Facebook and watch for the daily links to blog posts.  Disclaimer:  I am not a photographer and most of the photos are from a cell phone or small camera while hiking the Appalachian Trail or the C&O Canal/Great Allegheny Passage Trail.