The attitude of the psalmist toward worshiping God stands in stark contrast to the attitude of many Christians. There is no scripture which better reflects the kind of heart we must have in worship than Psalm 84. If the words of this psalm seem foreign to your attitude toward worship, it is imperative that you work on your attitude and change it.
The psalmist said, “My soul longs, yes, faints for the courts of the Lord; my heart and flesh sing for joy to the living God” (Psa. 84:2). When he was away from the courts of the Lord, his soul longed to be there. The present tense of the word “longs” indicates not an occasional passing desire to be in His court, but an ongoing desire to be at the Lord’s house. The depths of his desire to be there is seen in the word “faints.” He longed for his body (his flesh) and his soul (his heart) to be where he could sing to the living God.
He saw the courts of the Lord to be such a blessing that even the lowly bird would be blessed by having her nests near the altars there. “Even the sparrow finds a home, and the swallow a nest for herself, where she may lay her young, at your altar.” If a sparrow is blessed by being in His courts, how much more are we! If that which is least among His creation is blessed by being in His court, how much more are we!
Then the psalmist looked for some way that he might never have to leave His court. He speaks of those who dwell there and can always be singing praises to God. The psalmist said, “Blessed are those who dwell in Your house, ever singing Your praise.” Some would look as such opportunity as almost being like a curse, a thing to never be desired, but the psalmist calls it a blessing. Does this sound strange to you?
The final expression of his desire to be able to worship God in His courts is the most remarkable. “For a day in your courts is better than a thousand elsewhere. I would rather be a doorkeeper in the house of my God than dwell in the tents of wickedness” (Psa. 84:10). A thousand days is nearly three years. Yet think of how easy it is for us the trade one day in His courts for just one day elsewhere.
The psalmist would not trade one day in His court for a thousand days any other place doing any other thing. Some trade a day in the courts of the Lord for a day simply to sleep in and get rest. Some trade a day in His courts for a day at a recreational park. Some trade a day in His courts for fishing, shopping, golfing or traveling. Think about the last time you chose to miss meeting the Lord at His table in His temple. What did you get when you traded that day with Him for secular matters? He would not trade one day for 1,000 of yours!
If this seems strange to you, perhaps it is time to meditate and reset priorities. Think about this. Pray about it!