Our Blessing and Hope


After last night’s farewell gathering at College Church, I am struck by the reality of Jesus Christ living in and expressed through his people. Reading Psalm 84:1-12 this morning, I recognize the blessing and hope that undergirds this reality. If you’ve ever wondered about the nature of Christian joy, here it is:

How lovely is your dwelling place, O LORD Almighty!  2 My soul yearns, even faints, for the courts of the LORD; my heart and my flesh cry out for the living God.  3 Even the sparrow has found a home, and the swallow a nest for herself, where she may have her young– a place near your altar, O LORD Almighty, my King and my God.  4 Blessed are those who dwell in your house; they are ever praising you. Selah  5 Blessed are those whose strength is in you, who have set their hearts on pilgrimage.  6 As they pass through the Valley of Baca, they make it a place of springs; the autumn rains also cover it with pools.  7 They go from strength to strength, till each appears before God in Zion.  8 Hear my prayer, O LORD God Almighty; listen to me, O God of Jacob. Selah  9 Look upon our shield, O God; look with favor on your anointed one.  10 Better is one day in your courts than a thousand elsewhere; I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of the wicked.  11 For the LORD God is a sun and shield; the LORD bestows favor and honor; no good thing does he withhold from those whose walk is blameless.  12 O LORD Almighty, blessed is the man who trusts in you.

About the author

Chris Castaldo (PhD, London School of Theology) is the lead pastor at New Covenant Church in Naperville, Illinois. He is the author of Talking with Catholics about the Gospel and coauthor of The Unfinished Reformation.