If you followed our eating habits you would discover that the majority of times we eat our favourite Indian food we will take the food away rather than eating inside the restaurant. The reason…
Reference: v.13 No one could distinguish the sound of the shouts of joy from the sound of weeping, because the people made so much noise. And the sound was heard far away. (NIV Bible)
Explore: We have finally discovered the best Indian food in our local neighbourhood. When you move, it always takes a little time and some trial and error before finding all the best eating places. So you can imagine our delight when Cafe Saffron opened up down the road and served us the best Butter Chicken we had ever eaten. The chicken just melts in your mouth and another delicious dish is served in a cool coconut shell. There is a downside, however… I can't handle eating in. If you followed our eating habits you would discover that the majority of times we eat our favourite Indian food we will take the food away rather than eating inside the restaurant. The reason: incredibly loud musicians. There is usually a band playing, which is great for the atmosphere, but it makes conversation very challenging. We went there with some new friends once and I left not knowing any more about them because conversation was just too difficult. I gave up talking because when people spoke back I couldn't hear them over the lead singer. While the food is out of this world, there is just too much noise going on that I struggle to enjoy the whole experience.
Application: After the Israelites had rebuilt the temple in Ezra 3 they held a worship service that sounded a little bit like my favourite Indian restaurant: people could hear that sound from far away! The thing about the sound of the Israelites was that some of them were rejoicing while others were weeping. It was such a conglomeration of sound that people could not discern whether people were laughing or crying. The beauty of this is that God can discern our emotions, no matter how loud the noise around us is. If we are in a joyful worship service but we feel broken and devastated, God will hear the praises as well as the pain. If we are chatting to a friend who is going through a hard time but we have just received great news, God will hear the praises as well as the pain. If someone has just been promoted ahead of you, God will hear the praises as well as the pain. We can not hide our emotions from God, He is able to hear us even amongst all the noise. So whether you are rejoicing or weeping, cry out to God.
Prayer: Lord, You know our deepest emotions. May we have the words to express how we are feeling to You today. Amen.
Do you feel like rejoicing or weeping?
This article was written by Linda Bailey
Linda started theological studies in 1999 in Australia. After working for ten years in various church ministries, she now works as the breakfast producer at 89.9 LightFM - the Christian radio station in Melbourne, Australia. She writes blogs every day about passages she is currently reading in the Bible. Follow her on Google Plus +Linda Bailey or Facebook by clicking the like button on the right of this page.