Monday has come upon us, with both feet stomping. Ah, well. We lived through the night once again, which is not the case for all. A small blessing, perhaps, or a gigantic one, a matter of perspective. Not something we should take for granted, truly.
Today we begin a long period in the Psalms. We'll be in the Psalms for a while. MANY of these came from David. Yes, the warrior and king and shepherd boy was also a poet. And quite a few came out of the times when he was in trouble, sometimes running for his life. Others related what the Lord had done and was doing for him in those times. Can you relate? Most of us can. And many, perhaps most, can look back at the times that, somehow, the Lord brought us out of or through some truly awful circumstances. He's been doing that for a while. David was neither the first nor the last. David did not hide that. Neither should we.
Any one of these three today would be a good one to commit to memory and daily meditation. Or all of them. Scripture memorization, once a respected, valued, and frankly expected discipline, seems to have fallen out of favor. Unfortunately.
So our "song of the day" comes straight from Psalm 3. This is brought to us by the Brooklyn Tabernacle Choir. (sorry about the ad at the start). I was at various times privileged to be part of good sized choral groups that had this arrangement. I've only ever heard it in choral settings, never as congregational singing. And it's been done by solo gospel singers as well.
Yes, He is a shield for me and for others, and yes He hears our cries. A good thing.
Our New Testament reading is verses 1-15 in chapter 16 of the Acts of the Apostles.
Here we first see mention of Timotheus, a.k.a. Timothy.
And now the Gospel comes to Macedonia. That area includes what is now mostly Greece and Turkey. The city of Thyatira shown here is now known as Akhisar and is in western Turkey.
Now, most of us would consider Turkey to be in Asia, an area that Paul was barred by the Spirit from entering. Chalk it up to changed definitions.
And the nation now known as Macedonia is a good distance from there. It's north of Greece, in that Balkan region that has been a site of warfare just about as long as there have been people in the area. The ancient land of Macedonia, point of origin of Alexander the Great, had rather different boundaries as here shows.
And the Gospel was preached, and the church grew again. FAR from Jerusalem, and definitely not limited to the Jews.
That general area, what we now call Turkey, has groaned under the heel of the evil that is Islam for many centuries. That was not always the case. Indeed, the city of Istanbul was long known as Constantinople, and was for centuries the home base of the church east of Rome. That ended in 1453. And that Christian presence was in no small part due to the the seeds planted in the journeys of Paul and Timothy, as we see here.