I have a quiver full of them. Taking the biblical phrase somewhat out of context, I was replying to the amazement of a seminary classmate that I am the grandfather of eight.
The psalmist’s text is patriarchal in nature-only sons are mentioned-and perhaps militaristic in that these sons can protect their father in battle. Like a biblical Ben Cartwright, happy is the man, says the psalmist, who has a quiver full of sons to stand by his side as he faces his adversaries.
I have granddaughters and grandsons-and daughters and a son-each precious to me. Standing with me as I stand with them, we encounter the life we’ve been given, happy that we have each other. As life brings us challenges-“the bread of anxious toil”-from within our family or from outside, we can be thankful for the gifts we have been given in each other.
“Unless the LORD builds the house, those who build it labor in vain.” (verse 1) In the communities of our families and congregations, neighbourhoods and workplaces, we seek to expend our efforts to enhance the lives of ourselves and others. Yet all is nothing without the gift of life from a gracious God. Happy may we be.
God of grace, we give you thanks for all who stand with us and for us. Amen. — LDK