© Broadway United Methodist Church, 3338 N. Broadway St., Chicago, IL 60657



Today after many days of rain, darkness, stress, and nervousness… I opened my curtains and smiled as a ray of sunshine came into my home. I have been craving after the sun and its warmth. And today it felt like I kept seeking after it. I stood in the sun waiting for the bus, I sat in a sunspot on the bus, I then walked on the sidewalk where there was sun shining to get to Broadway. I saw blue skies. I heard birds and squirrels chatting back and forth. I found myself smiling.


It was once again fitting to this morning read the lectionary selection of the Psalm 96. This morning after a dark couple of weeks, I found the opportunity to reflect on the weekend and laugh. And God, it felt so good. Here’s what the Psalmist writes:


Psalm 96: 1-13 (NRSV)


“1 O sing to the Lord a new song; sing to the Lord, all the earth. 2 Sing to the Lord, bless his name; tell of his salvation from day to day. 3 Declare his glory among the nations, his marvelous works among all the peoples. 4 For great is the Lord, and greatly to be praised; he is to be revered above all gods. 5 For all the gods of the peoples are idols, but the Lord made the heavens. 6 Honor and majesty are before him; strength and beauty are in his sanctuary. 7 Ascribe to the Lord, O families of the peoples, ascribe to the Lord glory and strength. 8 Ascribe to the Lord the glory due his name; bring an offering, and come into his courts. 9 Worship the Lord in holy splendor; tremble before him, all the earth.


10 Say among the nations, "The Lord is king! The world is firmly established; it shall never be moved. He will judge the peoples with equity." 11 Let the heavens be glad, and let the earth rejoice; let the sea roar, and all that fills it; 12 let the field exult, and everything in it. Then shall all the trees of the forest sing for joy 13 before the Lord; for he is coming, for he is coming to judge the earth. He will judge the world with righteousness, and the peoples with his truth.”


It feels like a ray of sunshine has also been felt in this Psalm. This Psalm was written during the Israelite exile from Jerusalem, in the midst of upheaval and unknowing -- someone was able to feel hope for their future. That is incredibly powerful. Hope in the face of misery. The claiming of a leader that is God and not the leader of Persia or Babylon -- those are powerful words. The claiming of a God who will judge with equity who is filled with strength, beauty, and joy.


  For this next week I will continue to try and find hope in the ways that I see the earth claiming God’s sanctuary, strength, and soothing nature. I wish that to you as well. May God’s peace, strength, and rays of hope extend to you, so that you may extend them into the world.


  Paz y Salud, Jessie