Dream word – SING
“…speaking to one another in psalms and hymns and spiritual songs, singing and making melody in your heart to the Lord…” NKJV
Many evenings, my wife and I take an hour’s walk together in the Kentucky countryside, past all the entrances to the hollers where the black top ends and amongst the brush and on the green hillsides. These are sometimes speckled with light blue cornflowers, or sometimes freckled with the rich red leaves of disrobing hardwood trees getting ready to go to sleep for winter, whilst the ground itself smiles with the plump pumpkin orange of the earth’s chubby, child like little cheeks, all full of falls fatness at winters beckoning bedtime.
Amidst the colours of this Kentucky beauty, you can see the cold, angle ironed markers, still stuck upright in the dark and bloody ground. These property markers might be in the right legal place but they are completely out of place amongst such singing beauty. Standing there like old tramps, rusty and un-camouflaged amongst the foliage, sometimes even flagged with pink fluorescent plastic ribbons and all of them asking for a cigarette, they shout out the various property lines of a people proud to own a Southern piece of all-American pecan pie. Yup, personal real estate is especially important in settled Kentucky. The rusted poles of old angle iron might be more permanent than the old wooden staves previously used but still, they are very, very unsightly.
My hometown, over a thousand years ago, was once an Anglo-Saxon settlement in the centre of a meadow called a lea. Records show that some sixty acres of this lea land had alrerady been marked off by wooden staves and designated for a new town area. After the battle of Hastings in 1066, William the Conqueror gave this same area of Staveley, as a victory present to one his warriors. The Normans had finally arrived in my hometown.
The family of that warrior, Ascuit Musard, held Staveley for generations until the death of Nicholas Musard, a Roman Catholic priest, who, because he could not legally leave his land to his bastard children, had his property dispersed among his sisters, one of whom married Anker De Frechville, Baron of Crich. The Frechvilles left their mark on Staveley in the form of the old and well-haunted Hagge farm, manor house, Rectory and of course, a chantry, some parts of which date back to the thirteenth century, well before the ownership and sponsorship of the Frechville family.
A chantry is a private chapel, where a priest sang or chanted psalms for the soul of the founder. The religious rich have always had their spiritual insurance policies, paying those they believed to have the ear of God to intercede on their behalf. A chantry was such a place, a place of paid private prayer, praise and supplication for the person who had enough in his wallet to make it so. It sounds so crass doesn’t it, yet I tell you tonight, that I like the idea of a chantry. I like the idea of a private place of singing psalms, a private place to go into and sing to God some choice songs of the spirit.
Today in his devotional “My Utmost for His Highest”, Oswald Chambers from a speech to theological students says, “It is not the practical activities that are the strength of this Bible training College – its entire strength lies in the fact that here you are immersed in the truths of God to soak in them before Him. You have no idea of where or how God is going to engineer your future circumstances, and no knowledge of what stress and strain is going to be placed on you either at home or abroad. And if you waste your time in over activity, instead of being immersed in the great fundamental truths of God’s redemption, then you will snap when the stress and strain do come.”How true and friends and I am afraid, how descriptive of the modern day Christian.
I have seen many Christians snap and I do not want to be one of them. So tomorrow, I am going to build a room for singing psalms. Tomorrow I am going to pay the price to hear some happy hymns sung in my heart. Tomorrow I am going to set some spiritual songs to some merry music and sing them with my Father. Yes tomorrow, this priest of the most High God is going to build a chantry in a chamber of his heart and take some time each day thereafter to retreat into it and sing some songs of glory, sing some songs of my redemption, sing some psalms of praise, sing some songs of happy hope!
Tonight then, let us rest underneath His lullaby of love in Jesus and tomorrow let us each build ourselves a chantry.
Listen: “O My God, I cry in the daytime, but You do not hear; And in the night season, and am not silent. But You are holy, Enthroned in the praises of Israel. Our fathers trusted in You; They trusted, and You delivered them. They cried to You, and were delivered; They trusted in You, and were not ashamed.” - Psalms 22:2-5 NKJV
Pray: I will sing unto the Lord for He has triumphed gloriously the horse and rider thrown into the sea. The Lord is God and I will praise Him, my Father’s God and I will extol Him!
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