Monday, July 31, 2006

Mondayu Question of the Week . . . Times of Loss

I went to a funeral today and as you can guess Psalm 23 was read. I have never been particular found of this passage and I am not really sure why. So that got me thinking what is it about this text that people find so comforting? What other passage from the bible have you in the past found of comfort during times of loss?


Anonymous said...

Hi -- We read Psalm 23 in unison at our Sunday memorial service too. But like you, I'm thinking about why we read it/love it.

People find comfort in being without "want." Being with God even "in the shadow of death."

jim said...

My guess? It's simply traditional. Most people can't name a favorite psalm to save their live. For some reason it's been part of the funeral tradition and its the one psalm that people find familiar.

It's the same thing with weddings and 1 Corith 13. Has little or nothing to do with marriage in its original context yet out of tradition it remains as one of the standard texts for weddings (though we didn't use it...)

Becky Ardell Downs said...

I love the psalms, even psalm 23, although I think it's like John 3:16 in some ways-- overused, not much thought about. My favorites for comfort though are Rev. 21:1-5 (new heaven and new earth) along with Isaiah 65 to which rev refers, and much of Isaiah actually with its promises of new life and messiah.
I have yet to use I Cor 13 at a wedding, but I guess I haven't done that many of them yet. It's pretty when you don't think about it too much, which is what most people want at weddings, rather than thought-provoking, which it certainly can be in other contexts. Maybe we should switch and use Psalm 23 at weddings and I Cor at funerals?

daflowers said...

I find strength in Psalm 121. Comfort for thosse of us still here with a troubled path ahead. Our church uses 1 Thess. 4 at all services.

Psalm 121
A song of ascents.
1 I lift up my eyes to the hills—
where does my help come from?
2 My help comes from the LORD,
the Maker of heaven and earth.
3 He will not let your foot slip—
he who watches over you will not slumber;
4 indeed, he who watches over Israel
will neither slumber nor sleep.
5 The LORD watches over you—
the LORD is your shade at your right hand;
6 the sun will not harm you by day,
nor the moon by night.
7 The LORD will keep you from all harm—
he will watch over your life;
8 the LORD will watch over your coming and going
both now and forevermore.

1 Thessalonians 4:13-15
13Brothers, we do not want you to be ignorant about those who fall asleep, or to grieve like the rest of men, who have no hope. 14We believe that Jesus died and rose again and so we believe that God will bring with Jesus those who have fallen asleep in him. 15According to the Lord's own word, we tell you that we who are still alive, who are left till the coming of the Lord, will certainly not precede those who have fallen asleep.