Thursday, September 8, 2011
Out of the Barn!
King David, the sweet Psalmist of Israel, expressed the thrill of his heart when he knew and experienced the Lord's help in time of trouble in the 18th Psalm. It has always been one of my favorites. The imagery is gripping and intense:
"In my distress I called upon the LORD, and cried unto my God: he heard my voice out of his temple, and my cry came before him, even into his ears. Then the earth shook and trembled; the foundations also of the hills moved and were shaken, because he was wroth. There went up a smoke out of his nostrils, and fire out of his mouth devoured: coals were kindled by it. He bowed the heavens also, and came down: and darkness was under his feet. And he rode upon a cherub, and did fly: yea, he did fly upon the wings of the wind."
And it occurred to me, as I was preparing the latest issue of Gottesdienst for mailing at the PO this morning, that, inasmuch as the Lord always uses means, and that his means of rescue is the Holy Gospel, there is truth to the sentiment that the sending forth of Gottesdienst is in some small sense a bit of this imagery come true. Gottesdienst is full of the Gospel, and exists for the purpose of defending the Holy Liturgy of the Church in which the Gospel has been encased throughout all of history. Therefore when the Lord's words in Gottesdienst are mailed out, I think it's ok to say that this is in some sense the Lord himself riding upon a cherub, flying, riding upon the wings of the wind, coming to aid his people.
Though we certainly take no credit for the Lord's work, we are pleased to have been given this task. And it certainly remains a thrill to be able, every quarter, to say these words again: Gottesdienst is out of the barn.