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We sit today in the middle of what is celebrated during this weekend as the beginning of the summer season (although the calendar announces that late in June). Memorial Day weekend sees us stretching back to remember those brave people who have defended our nation in times of war and who have served throughout our history in all manner of capacities to preserve our freedom. By extension, we celebrate life: family, friends, colleagues – with picnics, baseball games in parks, laughter and prayer for peace in gathered communities of faith. At this hour we live in hope of weather that supports our plans, but in reality that doesn’t matter much; it is our presence together that creates the success of the day.

Psalm 67, the lectionary offering for today, can be considered, writes one commentator, as an international hymn of praise. Lynn Bauman says that our task as contemporary creatures is not simply to pray for ourselves, or narrowly for those around us who are dear to us, but to give voice for the whole earth. This is what it means to become “an instrument of praise” through which the whole creation speaks. Imagine yourself as creation’s voice, as an instrument through which those without voice can enter with praise the presence of God. Ancient Songs Sung Anew, p.166)

May the blessings of this weekend be great and may our gratitude mend division so that true peace may find a home in our hearts!