Spiritual Director · August 22, 2017

Devote #88

Do you remember the MasterCard “Priceless” commercials?

I had to do a little googling this morning to get some information. What I found was MasterCard started those “Priceless” campaigns back in 1997. In the very first one that aired on TV a dad takes his son to a baseball game and pays for a hot dog and a drink, but the conversation between the two of them is priceless. It runs like this…

“Two tickets… $46.”

“Two hot dogs, two popcorns, two sodas… $27.”

“On autographed baseball… $50.”

“Real conversation with an 11 year old son… (dramatic pause) Priceless!

And then we hear MasterCards catch words, “There are some things money can’t buy…. For everything else, there’s MasterCard.” And just so you know, MasterCard spoke those same words to us for 17 years and each time they presented to us a touching moment.

That’s what went tumbling through my mind this morning as I read Psalm 84. The Psalm writer fills our thoughts with the joy of worshipping our great God in His temple. This is how he starts the Psalm,

“LORD God All-Powerful, Your temple is so lovely! Deep in my heart I long for Your temple, and with all that I am I sing joyful songs to You.” —Psalm 84:1-2

He lets us know that,

“You bless everyone who lives in Your house, and they sing Your praises. You bless all who depend on You for their strength and all who deeply desire to visit Your temple.” —Psalm 84:4-5

And then the writer throws in the clincher,

“One day in Your temple is better than a thousand anywhere else. I would rather serve in Your house, than live in the homes of the wicked.” —Psalm 84:10

Just “one day” in the presence of God… Just “one day” giving Him our highest praise… Just “one day” to declare with all our mind and might, that our God reigns… is better than a “thousand anywhere else.”

I’m just wondering if that’s how you feel.

I mean it’s so easy for us to go to worship with a laissez faire attitude. We’re complacent… we’re bored… we’re reluctant. Through the years of ministry, I’ve had people come up to me at the end of a worship service and tell me they didn’t get anything out of the worship service that morning.

My response was pretty simple, “I’m sorry to hear that, but did you put anything into it?”

Here’s my word of encouragement for you today

The fellowship of other believers… free! The opportunity to sing praise to God… free. The privilege of hearing God’s holy Word spoken… free. The honor of being in the presence of the Living God… Priceless!

“One day in Your temple is better than a thousand anywhere else.” I know it’s only Tuesday, but you can worship Him every day.

I love being in Your presence. I love hearing Your voice. I love feeling Your touch. There is no place I’d rather be. Jesus, in Your name I pray, Amen.

—Rev. Dr. MM Marxhausen

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Mark was Spiritual Director for VdC from 2016 to 2019. He's written many of the devotions, especially the Devote and Affirm series, found on this website.