Irish Music and a Psalm

One of my favorite Psalms is Psalm 84. I have read it, heard it set to music, and pondered it often. Here is the New Revised Version.

          How lovely is your dwelling place, 
    O LORD of hosts! 
    2      My soul longs, indeed it faints 
    for the courts of the LORD; 
    my heart and my flesh sing for joy 
    to the living God. 
    3      Even the sparrow finds a home, 
    and the swallow a nest for herself, 
    where she may lay her young, 
    at your altars, O LORD of hosts, 
    my King and my God. 
    4      Happy are those who live in your house, 
    ever singing your praise.       Selah 
    5      Happy are those whose strength is in you, 
    in whose heart are the highways to Zion.
    6      As they go through the valley of Baca 
    they make it a place of springs; 
    the early rain also covers it with pools. 
    7      They go from strength to strength; 
    the God of gods will be seen in Zion. 
    8      O LORD God of hosts, hear my prayer; 
    give ear, O God of Jacob!       Selah 
    9      Behold our shield, O God; 
    look on the face of your anointed. 
    10      For a day in your courts is better 
    than a thousand elsewhere. 
    I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God 
    than live in the tents of wickedness. 
    11      For the LORD God is a sun and shield; 
    he bestows favor and honor. 
    No good thing does the LORD withhold 
    from those who walk uprightly. 
    12      O LORD of hosts, 
    happy is everyone who trusts in you. 

In my studies I learned that when verse 6 says the Valley of Baca, that means the valley of tears or weeping. Isn't it just like our God to change a place of weeping into a place of springs! One of Bob's favorite songs was a Vineyard creation about "Better is one day in your house than thousands elsewhere."

When we visited Ireland in 2011 I had my own experience of a 'thin place.' A thin place is described as a place where the distance between heaven and earth is not as thick as in some regions of earth. 

When we visited the Aran ruins on Inishmore, Aran island I was moved by a church ruin. After much research and naming it wrong in a prior blog posting, I believe this is called Teampall Bhreacain, Na Seacht dTeampaill, County Galway, Ireland. The  difficulty is the language and there are multiple small church ruins on Inishmore!

When we arrived I practically sat down in awe. I believe the following photos were all taken by my wonderful husband, r m dutina.

The altar from afar, look to upper right wall by altar

Remember verse 3 above? This is what I wanted you to see in last photo.

“Even the sparrow finds a place where she may lay her young”

And when I pondered how many had worshiped at this altar over the years, and there I was, too, worshiping my God I was awe struck and taken into His presence.

Yes, there was rubble on the floor and I am glad it was left for us to see. The roof was long gone, but God was still present.

How lovely is Thy dwelling place, O Lord of Hosts to me!

This song has transported my soul there ever since. I was delighted to find it on You Tube to share with you here!

Tomorrow a poem inspired by this thin place!

One thought on “Irish Music and a Psalm

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