Wednesday of Pentecost 15 – Psalm 113

Praise the Lord!
Praise, O servants of the Lord,
    praise the name of the Lord!

Blessed be the name of the Lord
    from this time forth and forevermore!
From the rising of the sun to its setting,
    the name of the Lord is to be praised!

The Lord is high above all nations,
    and his glory above the heavens!
Who is like the Lord our God,
    who is seated on high,
who looks far down
    on the heavens and the earth?
He raises the poor from the dust
    and lifts the needy from the ash heap,
to make them sit with princes,
    with the princes of his people.
He gives the barren woman a home,
    making her the joyous mother of children.
Praise the Lord!

A few weeks ago the New York Mets called up a young man from their farm team in Syracuse. He had only been playing AAA ball for a few days, less than a week, when the call came to pack up and head to New York for his first major league game ever. His name is Brett Baty. In his first at bat, in fact, his first swing as a major league player, he hit a home run. You can watch this in a little video clip here. His parents were in the stands and the camera was already focused on them as they watched their son’s first game. It is a lot of fun to see.

This psalm speaks of the great and unexpected reversal which is the mark of God’s kingdom. He whose name is praised from the rising to the setting of the sun, east to west, turns the world on its head, raising the poor from the dust and sitting them down with princes. At the end of that little video you see the many players of the Mets, some of them justifiably famous I am sure, embracing this lanky and long-haired kid not long out of high school. I am not saying that God favors the Mets, Cardinals, or even the Yankees. I firmly believe that God loves to see people enjoy themselves and baseball is a great sport for that. But God’s team are the folks he sees on the bottom of the heap, names like Gideon, a shepherd boy named David facing down Goliath, an out of work advisor to the king named Jeremiah, and a young woman named Mary of Nazareth. He saw the sorrow of Sarah, Rebecca, Rachel, and Hannah. He is the God who sees such things and raises up the poor from the dust. Praise Him!

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