Monday Musings – August 26, 2013

Dear Friends,

When I started sending these Monday e-mails two years ago, I called them “Monday Musings”.  Not a very catchy name, but I couldn’t think of anything better.  To “muse” is to “be absorbed in one’s thoughts; to engage in meditation; to ponder.”  I had no idea at the time that the word “muse” in actually found in the Bible.  Just once.  It was in Sunday’s scripture, Psalm 77:12.  “I will meditate on all Thy work, and muse on Thy mighty deeds.”

Perhaps you know that “muse” has another meaning in Greek mythology.  The nine Muses were the nine daughters of Zeus and Mnemosyne.  Each of them presided over a different art or science.  It was said that “their hearts are set upon songs and their spirit is free from care.”  I’ll bet you didn’t know that our word “music” can be traced to these nine Muses.  I sure didn’t.

Sometimes it can be confusing to keep straight what you remember from the Bible and what you remember from Greek mythology.  I found on a Bible answer website this question: “Where are the Muses in the Bible?”  The answer, which you already now know, is that the Muses are not in the Bible and that the word “muse” is found only once in the Bible.  Psalm 77:12.

To muse is to meditate.  It’s similar to prayer, but it’s not quite the same.  When you pray, you know, you’re praying.  When you muse (or meditate), it’s more passive.  You’re just opening your mind to whatever thoughts God might send your way.  In my experience, I do my most creative thinking when I’m musing, not when I’m problem solving.

This connection with music is interesting.  Music helps me to muse.  I’m sure you’re busy on this last full week before September, but I hope you will find some time to listen to some music and to muse.  May you like those nine Greek goddesses have your “hearts set upon songs and your spirit free from care”.

In Christ,

John