December 17 Friday
Lately I have been attracted to various expressions of love and joy for God as found in religious traditions unfamiliar to me. Like Turkish whirling dervishes with their billowing white skirts and ears turned towards God. Or the Jewish tradition of gathering to gaze up to the stars beneath the branches of the sukkah each fall.
In the third stanza of Psalm 98, a psalm of joy, we find the mighty ocean clapping and expressing her love for God, as well. Perhaps this is the oldest and most constant expression of adoration we can find. The waves of water have thunderously applauded all of God’s glory from the very beginning of time. Day in and day out, the waves move back and forth creating a soothing rocking motion, certainly caressing the earth with her love. Despite the woes and heartbreak she has witnessed and enveloped, the joyous clapping never ceases.
And any of us can stand facing her with toe grasping the shifting sand below to witness the only point of view that remains unchanged throughout the test of time. And with toes grasped, we too, find that the joyous mantra melts the burdens we needlessly bear, if only for a moment.