Monday, November 14, 2011
Camping out? Then you're missing out!
Psalm 84:10 Better is one day in your courts than a thousand elsewhere; I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of the wicked.
My heart has been dwelling on the second half of this verse for several weeks. I find the comparison between "the house of God" and the "tents of the wicked" to be very thought-provoking.
Here's what Webster's has to say about a tent:
tent: a collapsible shelter of fabric (as nylon or canvas) stretched and sustained by poles and used for camping outdoors or as a temporary building
A few of those words stand out: collapsible, temporary.
I'm not one of those people who love to camp. Perhaps that's why this verse is so striking to me. Have you ever camped during a storm? Collapsible is not a desireable attribute during a storm. Neither is temporary.
But a house? Now that's different. Two nights ago we had strong winds blowing through our little town. After putting my son to bed, he came running into our bedroom frightened of the "thunder" outside. I explained that there was no thunder, it was only the wind blustering loudly outside his window. That didn't comfort him. But what did help was when we discussed our home. We live in a strong house. A house that will not blow away or be torn apart. It will not cave in because of the rain or heavy snow. Our house provides safety from the dangers without. Once he understood that, he was able to rest in peace.
Which leads me back to Psalm 84. Doesn't it sound so much more enticing to dwell in the house of God than in the tents of the wicked? All the world has to offer is temporary, collapsible, fleeting enjoyment. But, oh, to spend even one day as a servant in the HOUSE of the Lord! A place of protection, joy, provision. A place where the owner of the house lavishes his guests with the finest of everything. A place where we need not fear the storm's raging winds or the predators lurking in the darkness. His house has strength beyond what you can imagine when dwelling in a flimsy tent. And it is only in the house of the Lord that you will find true rest.