Cherished Destiny

September 28, 2021
Tuesday of the Twenty-sixth Week in Ordinary Time

Today, in God’s Lavish Mercy, we pray with Psalm 87, a Song of Zion which imagines the future Jerusalem as the world’s center of worship.

The foundation upon the holy mountains
    the LORD loves:
The gates of Zion,
    more than any dwelling of Jacob.
Glorious things are said of you,
    O city of God!

Psalm 87: 1-3

For centuries, the Jews had been scattered through many alien countries. Some had lost their ties to their inherited faith. The psalm calls all people “home” to the worship of the one, true God.

Jerusalem from the Mount of Olives by Frederic Edwin Church

Jerusalem is a profoundly unifying symbol for Jews. That is why it is so important for Jesus to “go up to Jerusalem” in order to accomplish our redemption. As our Gospel tells us:

When the days for Jesus to be taken up were fulfilled,
he steadfastly turned his face to Jerusalem.

Luke 9:51

Praying with these passages may seem difficult for Christians if we have no emotional ties to the city of Jerusalem. But for us, Jerusalem serves as a symbol of that stable and committed faith which allows us to live our lives in the pattern of Jesus.

We journey too, as Jesus did toward the fullness of life in God. Our journey takes singular steadfastness, just as his did, a commitment rooted in faith and grace.

Together in faith, we form a New Jerusalem, glorious in each one of us through our Baptism into Christ.

Poetry: A Sonnet – Malcolm Guite

Now to the gate of my Jerusalem,
The seething holy city of my heart,
The saviour comes. But will I welcome him?
Oh crowds of easy feelings make a start;
They raise their hands, get caught up in the singing,
And think the battle won. Too soon they’ll find
The challenge, the reversal he is bringing
Changes their tune. I know what lies behind
The surface flourish that so quickly fades;
Self-interest, and fearful guardedness,
The hardness of the heart, its barricades,
And at the core, the dreadful emptiness
Of a perverted temple. Jesus  come
Break my resistance and make me your home.

Music: Jerusalem, My Destiny – Rory Cooney

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