Can You Sing the Lord’s Song in a “Strange Land”?

A music staff and the words "then sings my soul" painted on a wallThe psalmist writes about a time when the Jews were in captivity in Babylon. While there, the Babylonians asked them to “Sing us one of the songs of Zion” (Psalm 137:3).  These were the songs they used to sing in Jerusalem to God. But now they were in captivity in Babylon.

“How shall we sing the Lord’s song in a strange land?” they asked (verse 4). After all, it was God who had allowed them to be led captive, albeit due to their own behavior. How could they exalt His name under those circumstances?

Sometimes, we also find ourselves in a “strange land.” For this Jews, their strange land was a foreign location. For us, our strange land may refer to a trying situation we can find ourselves in. Having never been in that place before, we have no bank of experience to draw from. The question is, can we sing the Lord’s song during such an occurrence.

I am sure we all agree that it’s much easier to sing songs of praises to God when all is well. But we should not allow our circumstances to dictate our attitude toward God. He never promised us things will always go well in life. But He has promised to never leave nor forsake us. And He remains true to that.

The Jews questioned their ability to sing the Lord’s song because they were in a strange land. But God is omnipresent. Nothing or no physical place can separate us from Him. Not only is He everywhere at the same time, but also He is God everywhere at the same time. The place we find ourselves in may be strange to us but not to God.

Fast forward to today. We know the answer to the question the psalmist posed above. It is through a personal relationship with God through Christ that we can sing the Lord’s song in a strange land. We walk by faith and not by sight. We are more moved by what we believe than by what we see. In all things, we are more than conquerors through Him.

One of the things that amazes me during weekly worship in a local church is how some of the people can sing songs of praises and adoration to God. I don’t mean in terms of the beauty of their voices. But in terms of the place where you or I know they stand in life as they sing. They are not rejoicing because all is well in their life. But because they know how to sing the Lord’s song in a strange land. That’s a powerful thing a genuine relationship with the Lord makes possible for all of us. So, if you find yourself in a “strange land” in life today, sing on.

Copyright © 2017 by Frank King. All rights reserved.

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2 thoughts on “Can You Sing the Lord’s Song in a “Strange Land”?

  1. When I watch the news these days I no longer recognize the world I grew up in. Indeed, this has become a “strange land.” But I’m reminded of a song Sunday school children used to sing: “With Christ in the vessel I can smile at the storm…as I go sailing home.” Have missed your posts of late, Frank!

    • Thank, Kathleen. Returned last week from a much appreciated vacation. You are right; America has become a “strange land.” Because of the one who lives in us, we can still sing the Lord’s song.

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