July 15 - Psalm 122:1-9

Monday, July 15, 2013

I rejoiced with those who said to me, “Let us go to the house of the LORD.” 
Our feet are standing in your gates, Jerusalem. 

Jerusalem is built like a city that is closely compacted together. 
That is where the tribes go up— the tribes of the LORD— 
   to praise the name of the LORD according to the statute given to Israel. 
There stand the thrones for judgment, the thrones of the house of David. 

Pray for the peace of Jerusalem:  “May those who love you be secure. 
May there be peace within your walls and security within your citadels.” 
For the sake of my family and friends, I will say, “Peace be within you.” 
For the sake of the house of the LORD our God, I will seek your prosperity.

I have loved every single church that I've attended.  When I would see the building, I felt something peaceful within me.  Worshiping the Lord within a congregation awakens something in me; both peaceful and energetic at the same time.

My memories of our childhood churches have had a tendency to blur together, but one thing those buildings had was a basement where we had many meals together, whether they were potluck celebrations or funeral dinners; youth group meetings or Bible School snack times.  Those rooms all carry strong memories for me.

I remember the sidewalks which led to those buildings.  I took some of them right to the front door of the church, while others led me around the back way to my dad’s office.

I remember the campaign to replace all of the clear glass windows with gorgeous stained glass pieces in a church.  I remember losing our back yard so the church could grow and add more classrooms.  I remember singing in choirs from childhood through adulthood … in every single church.  One of those wonderful children’s choirs was called “Merry Notes.”  I took piano lessons from the church musicians and sat at the feet of amazing Sunday School teachers, listening as they told stories I would later come to recognize as being in my Bible.

I met great men and women who came to preach and to teach throughout the years. I made fast friends, fell in and out of love with boys from grade school on up.  I saw my father stand up every Sunday morning and pour his heart and soul out from the pulpit, encouraging his congregation to find ways to know Jesus Christ better.

There were certainly many Sunday mornings I made my mother’s life miserable as she tried to prod us out of the house in order to be on time for church, but for the most part, whenever there was something going on at the church, I was there and I gladly said, “I rejoiced with those who said to me, “Let us go to the house of the LORD.”