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Wednesday, March 31, 2010

house of God, forever

In recent days, I have found myself returning again and again to Psalm 23. As one of the better known Psalms, if not the best known, I usually focus my attention elsewhere. Selfishly, I prefer to dig a little more,  looking for nuggets of wisdom that are not so common, and therefore less likely to be displayed in needlepoint on the wall of someone's dining room (My apologies if this is the case at your house). But this week, it has caught my eye and my heart in a variety of ways.

I came across it while searching out another specific verse that I couldn't quite remember the location of. Then sitting my car, I saw a quick note I had written in my small car/travel Bible that reminded me of witnessing nearly a thousand Chinese Christians recite this verse (in Chinese) this past summer during my 10-day trip to Beijing and Shanghai. This stirred a great deal of memory and emotion that I had let slip in the 8 months since I returned. Yesterday, sitting in a coffee shop, I heard Jon Foreman's song "House of God, Forever" come on my iTunes. Although I may write more later about the Psalm itself, it is this song where I want to park for now.

This song is a simple acoustic retelling of Psalm 23. Foreman doesn't add to or take anything away from the Scripture itself. He just sings with pure faith, hope, and love that the words are true. My favorite thing about the song itself, however, is that it is sung twice, once each by a man and a woman. There is intense beauty in this arrangement, as each voice professes theses words to their Maker individually. It demonstrates that King David's profession of joyful trust is accessible for all of us whoever and wherever we find ourselves. And as the voices join one another for the final refrain, there is a strong sense of shared trust in the Lord's direction and provision for their lives.

"House of God, Forever" by Jon Foreman
God is my shepherd
I won't be wanting
I won't be wanting
He makes me rest
In fields of green
With quite streams
Even though I walk
Through the valley
Of death and dying
I will not fear
'Cause you are with me
You are with me

Your shepherd staff
Comforts me
You are my feast
In the presence of enemy
Surely goodness
Follow me
Follow me
In the house of God, forever


Kirk Petersen said...

I'll have to give this song a listen to soon... thanks a lot for insulting my finest needlepoint handiwork!