Psalm 87 (Psalms on the Trail)

Psalm 87:1,7


On this holy mountain

stands the city God has founded….

The singers and the dancers will say, 

“All my fresh springs are in you.”  

Psalm 87:1,7

This photo, taken by my husband, is of Laurel Lake in Pine Grove Furnace State Park, PA.  The Appalachian Trail runs along this ridge of South Mountain.  (If you zoom in you might see a rock outcropping called Pole Steeple, where I often sit.)  South Mountain is not notable for its height, as you can guess from the photo, but its length is considerable—70 miles.  It is the northern terminus of the famous Blue Ridge which extends into Virginia.  At the base of this small section of South Mountain is a spring that gushes year round with clean, cold water.  Rick and I have a permanent campsite nearby, and I sometimes come to this spring to get fresh, untreated water.   “All my fresh springs are in you,” says the psalmist.

Do you remember when Jesus said, “Blessed are those hunger and thirst after righteousness, for they shall be filled”? (Matt. 5:6)  His words are a promise  for a day when we shall finally be satisfied by God’s goodness and justice evident on the earth.  Or when Jesus said to the Samaritan woman, “Those who drink of the water that I will give them will never be thirsty.  The water that I will give will become in them a spring of water gushing up to eternal life.” (John 4:14)  Here is a vision of there being an abundance in our enduring relationship with God.  Or go back to Psalm 42:2: “My soul thirsts for God, for the living God.  When shall I come and behold the face of God?”  In this question is an acknowledgment of our persistent need for God.  Or when Jesus was on the cross and said, “I am thirsty”? (John 19:28)  We hear in this cry an acknowledgment of the terrible depths, physical and spiritual, to which our Lord went in giving his life for us. 

Water, thirst, fresh springs, drinking—what scripture speaks to your spiritual heart today?


1. Take this verse with you and ponder its meaning for you throughout the day.  What do you notice?  What do you wonder?

2. Or read all of Psalm 87 to discover how this verse fits into this psalm.

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

Tomorrow’s psalm  will be Psalm 88:12

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.