My favorite Psalm always has been and always will be Psalm 8. There is something about that Psalm that stirs my soul and nearly moves me to tears everytime I read or hear it…I like to imagine the Psalmist gazing up at the night sky with his mouth hanging open, maybe clutching a lyre to his chest, and I can almost see the stars twinkling in his eyes as he weaves back and forth drunk on the grandeur confronting him. I have stood in his footprints many times (minus the lyre of course), feeling so very astonished at the beauty of the universe and trying to imagine what the creator of it all must be like.
But then today it occurred to me that the majesty of the sky is only the tiniest slice of the wonder of creation. What might the Psalmist have said if he had seen this cave? Or what might he have to say about a rainforest or Mt. Everest, or the bottom of the ocean or the inside of a glacier? The Psalmist was totally blown away by the sky and that was enough for him to sit down and write a song of praise and thanks.
We need to do more of that I think. Okay, maybe not write lyre songs, but find ways to honor creation and the creator because when you really stop and pay attention to some of this stuff you can’t help but realize what a miracle life really is. And when you realize what a miracle life really is, you can’t help but be appalled at the destructive things we humans are doing to creation – and to ourselves.
What might the Psalmist have to say about a strip mine, or an oil spill, or a nuclear explosion? I kind of picture him smashing his lyre and tearing at his clothes – and maybe writing Psalm 88. Psalm 88 ends in darkness and despair; is that how we end?