Friendly Friendship Baptist Church. Ernie Barnes. 1994.

Psalm 150: Praise for God’s Surpassing Greatness

1 Praise the Lord!
Praise God in his sanctuary;
    praise him in his mighty firmament![a]
2 Praise him for his mighty deeds;
    praise him according to his surpassing greatness!

3 Praise him with trumpet sound;
    praise him with lute and harp!
4 Praise him with tambourine and dance;
    praise him with strings and pipe!
5 Praise him with clanging cymbals;
    praise him with loud clashing cymbals!
6 Let everything that breathes praise the Lord!
Praise the Lord!

This painting is called Friendly Friendship Baptist Church, and was made by Ernie Barnes (an ex-NFL player!) in 1994. Look at that movement! That joy! Don’t you want to just climb on in and join them?

People often joke about Presbyterians being the “frozen chosen,” and like most jokes, there is some truth to that. We certainly don’t let loose like the people in that painting.

There was a part of the lectionary for Psalm 150 that really got me: “while a hermeneutic of suspicion can be a healthy trait for a mature religious identity, suspicion can stifle our joyous praise. Paying excessive attention to doubt and distrust draws attention inward and away from God.”

Doubt and distrust draws attention inward and away from God.


If you’re my friend on Facebook, you know that my Google Nest woke up out of the blue on Friday to dare me to dance.


If so I extend that dare to all of you.

I dare you to dance.

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