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psalm 84.

September 2, 2013

I don’t always read the ESV study Bible for pleasure, as I’m more of a Message Version kind of girl for my daily devotionals. But today I whipped the giant Bible out because I had a question, and I ended up finding so much comfort and peace. Verses 5-7 are familiar. They read:

Blessed are those whose strength is in you,
in whose heart are the highways to Zion.
As they go through the Valley of Baca
they make it a place of springs;
the early rain also covers it with pools.
 They go from strength to strength;
each one appears before God in Zion.

I don’t know if the writers of the ESV study Bible hoped to inspire people by their extensive footnotes, or if they just simply wrote to illuminate the meanings of the scripture to the best of their ability. Either way, my heart swooned when reading the footnote here.

“The next section describes those who make the journey to Zion to worship at such a sanctuary; they are blessed. Their strength is in God, to sustain them on the way; the highways are in their hearts, which probably means that they actually want to go (pilgrimage was obligatory, but should never become mechanical or burdensome). The location of the Valley of Baca is unknown; it seems to have been a dry place, but the faithful pilgrims make it a place of springs (which probably means that they delight in this valley as much as if it were well-watered, being so happy to be on the way). These pilgrims go from strength to strength (i.e. they keep on finding new levels of strength for the journey), until each one appears before God in Zion.” (emphases my own)

Seriously, how encouraging is this? A reminder of the reason for the pilgrimage, the joy that can be found in the journey, and how the Lord provides the strength we need to press on.  May I delight in the valley as much as if it were well-watered and continue to seek the Lord to find new levels of strength.

“For the Lord God is a sun and a shield; the Lord bestows favor and honor. No good thing does he withhold from those who walk uprightly.” (Ps. 84:11)

With promises like that to hang on to, let’s keep going.

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2 Comments leave one →
  1. Mama permalink
    September 2, 2013 6:23 pm

    So beautiful.

    We just lost Allie Armstrong today.

    Your post means a lot to me. Someday I will show it to Adam.

  2. September 13, 2013 2:14 pm

    Um I love this. Also, my bible tells me that “Baca” means “weeping.” word.
    love you.

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