From the Pastor’s Desk
“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.” – Psalm 84:10
I have read Psalm 84 numerous times. It is one of those psalms that really speaks to me about the joy of being a part of God’s kingdom and reminds me of how much God delights in our praise and worship. It is also a psalm that focuses on the importance of being in God’s house, in the church, to join others in that worship and praise.
I have often heard people say things like “I can worship anywhere” or “Why do I need to go to church?” When I hear those comments, this psalm always comes to mind. I immediately think of verse 10 which says that a day in God’s courts is better than a thousand elsewhere. I have wondered why people do not see that being in church is better than being outside of church. It is not only better, it is way better. If we were offered one thing or a thousand other things, most of us would immediately say 1,000 is better than one.
But more is not always better; sometimes it is just more. This psalm also reminds us that quality is better than quantity when it comes to relationships, especially with God. Ponder it this way: Would you rather have one true friend or 1,000 friends who won’t show up when you really need them? The Psalmist knew the answer to this question. I will take the one true friend; I will take the one who will not forsake me or leave me; I will take the one who is willing to die for me; I will take the one who will stay with me through my ups and downs, who will forgive me when I mess up and will rejoice with me when I get it right. A day in God’s courts is indeed better than a thousand elsewhere because in God’s courts is where we know and are known by Jesus. It is where we continually say thank you for salvation through praise and worship and where we acknowledge the privilege that we have of being God’s children.
But wait, there’s more, because verse 10 has a second line: “I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than live in the tents of wickedness.” When new stadiums are built these days, they design them so that there is not supposed to be a bad seat in the house. You can get a good view of what is going on, plus huge monitors and cameras are used to help those sitting farther away to see all the action. When the Psalmist wrote about the benefit of being in God’s house, He was reminding us that there is never a bad seat in the house of the Lord. Even the doorkeeper in God’s house has a better seat than those living in the tents of wickedness. Why? Because even the doorkeeper is in God’s house enjoying the worship, the praise and the presence of God.
So the next time you are tempted to stay home and not come to church, read Psalm 84 and remind yourself that there is no better place to be. Remember that the benefits of being part of God’s kingdom and celebrating with other Christians on Sunday mornings far outweigh the benefits of doing something else. Make being in God’s house a priority for you and your family. It is time well spent to honor the One who gave it all for you. The Psalmist called God’s dwelling a lovely place where he experienced the living God. I pray and hope it is all that and more for you every time we gather together to hear the Word and sing God’s praises.
-By Pastor Miguel