4Sing to God, sing praises to his name;
Lift up a song to him who rides through the deserts;
His name is the LORD;
Exult before him!
5Father of the fatherless and protector of widows
Is God in his holy habitation.
6God settles the solitary in a home;
he leads out the prisoners to prosperity,
but the rebellious dwell in a parched land.
In the name of + Jesus.
From the beginning, it was not good for man to be alone (Gen. 2:18). It was not good for man to be a single, solitary person. And so, already in the beginning, the LORD made a helper fit for the first man, and together, the man and the women were the first household. From the beginning community was a gift given by God within the family: Man, Wife, and children on the way!
All around us we have opportunities for “community.” Social media “communities” such as Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, and the like, promise to connect you with friends, family, and more. It should be said that, all of these platforms do provide some sort of connection with other humans; I have witnessed these media platforms being used in profound ways to love and serve the neighbor. But…
But none of these social media platforms can replace the gift our LORD has given us in our family. The psalmist writes, “God settles the solitary in a home; he leads out the prisoners to prosperity.” In our search for connections, and community, and to be networked with others, we need to look no further than those with whom we live. Prisoners of isolation, and those who are starved for community, have a prosperous and lively community among those whom the LORD has given right there in their own homes: spouses, parents, children, even extended family and dear friends (the psalm includes the fatherless and the widow, too!).
And all the while, our society laments the breakdown of the family. But how many times haven’t we told our children, or our friends, to “wait just a minute,” while we craft a clever Facebook update? What might happen in our families, and within our communities, if we would tell Facebook to “wait just a minute,” while we took our spouse out for dinner—and left the phone on silent J.
I’m not advocating that we shut ourselves off from media tools which can be used to love and serve the neighbor. I’m just encouraging all of us, not to forget where the LORD has given us real community, even from the beginning. And while you may be able to talk with your friends and family across the world because of a computer screen, remember, that they are there because two people were blessed to become a one-flesh family in the first place.
Christ is risen! He is risen indeed, Alleluia!
Visit, O Lord, the homes in which Your people dwell, and keep all harm and danger far from them. Grant that we may dwell together in peace under the protection of Your holy angels, sharing eternally in Your blessings; through Jesus Christ, our Lord.