Read Psalm 126

 

When the LORD restored the fortunes of Zion,

            we were like those who dream.

Then our mouth was filled with laughter,

            and our tongue with shouts of joy;

 then it was said among the nations,

            “The LORD has done great things for them.”

 

The LORD has done great things for us, and we rejoiced.

 

Restore our fortunes, O LORD,

            like the watercourses in the Negeb.

May those who sow in tears reap with shouts of joy.

 

Those who go out weeping, bearing the seed for sowing,

            shall come home with shouts of joy, carrying their sheaves.

(NRSV)

 

 —from Rev. Billy Crane, First Christian Church (Disciples of Christ), Grafton

 

            When David speaks of captivity, we cannot be certain that he is referring to the return from Babylonian captivity, or some other change in the fortunes of the people.  But whatever the case, the people were like those who were having a wonderful dream that filled them with laughter and singing.  They acknowledged that the Lord had done great things for them.

 

            David refers to “the south,” the Negeb, a mostly semi-arid part of Israel that received most of its water from streams that only flowed during the winter rains.  So David is asking the Lord to restore prosperity to the people, similar to the way the winter rains blessed the dry land.

 

            The final verse is that great promise that many have claimed across the years —we will reap a great harvest if we make the most of God’s blessing, by doing our part by sowing the seed!

 

Enable us to see beyond our moments of struggle

toward your promised future, O God,

that we may sow the seed of hope in our world.

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