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