Monday, September 17, 2012

Stepping Up!

I was glad when they said unto me, "Let us go to the house of the Lord!" -- Psalm 122:1

A large group of us from Mississippi were on the Teaching Steps beside the wall of the Old City in Jerusalem. 

These steps were climbed by pilgrims approaching Jerusalem for the three great festivals of the Jewish faith (Deuteronomy 16:16):  The Feast of Unleavened Bread, the Feast of Weeks, and the Feast of Booths.

There are 15 steps, and there are 15 Psalms of Ascent, Psalms 120-134.  Among these are beloved verses that many of us can recite, heart psalms for us.

We will pause on each step, reading the psalms one by one, step by step.  The Psalms of Ascent are also called Gradual Psalms, Songs of Degrees, Songs of Steps, Pilgrim Songs.

As we speak and listen to these psalms, we "step up" toward God just as our forebears in faith moved up to worship God and offer their gifts.  Moving through the psalms, there is a senses of spiritual ascent, from spiritual birth through enlargement of the spirit to spiritual maturity.

These psalms are lovely to read in Jerusalem, or in Mississippi, on any day.

With gratitude for the comfort and strength of God's word to us,

--Bishop Hope Morgan Ward

God Is Still In Control!

Miss Lladale Carey
Web Content Producer

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