Wha I would have Said

Now at the dedication of the wall of Jerusalem they sought out the Levites in all their places, to bring them to Jerusalem to celebrate the dedication with gladness, both with thanksgivings and singing, with cymbals and stringed instruments and harps

Nehemiah 12:27

In my congregation we have been studying the book of Nehemiah – Rebuilding the Walls. On this Sunday, I was excited to preach the message from chapter 12 because, frankly, it was good. Now that God has put us all in “time out” and has sent us to our rooms, I won’t be able to preach that sermon.

I would have read the story about how they celebrated and how the Bible commands us to give thanks, praise, rejoice, and celebrate. It is just as important, if not more so, as fasting and mourning. The Westminster Chatecism states, “Man’s chief end is to glorify God and ENJOY him forever,” (emphasis mine). We are to revel in His goodness and grace.

I would have pointed out that allkinds of instruments were used, trumpets, cymbals, and stringed instruments. I would have talked about Dusty, who was thrilled when I asked him to play his harmonica for church. I would have told them about old Boozy, who grinned from ear to ear while playing his banjo – the one with a big red light in the middle. I would have told them about Norm, who played the steel guitar for services every week.

I would have talked about how the Israelites praised with singing, using antiphonal choirs that echoed back and forth the anthems. I would have mentioned the Levites who led in the singing (praise team?) I would have encouraged each one to sing with all their heart, no matter how they worry about the sound of their voice.

If I had preached this sermon, I would have reminded the congregation that this year is our 130th anniversary, and we need to plan a celebration. I envision this celebration to be like the one in Nehemiah, with music, singing, and jubilation.

We won’t be able to worship together for a while, but I hope we miss corporate worship. I hope the time away will create a hunger to gather again. When we come back together, I hope  we will start celebrating right then.

That’s what I would have said.

 

“God be with you till we meet again;

When life’s perils thick confound you,

Put his arms unfailing round you.

God be with you till we meet again.”

(Jeremiah Rankin)

Published in: on March 21, 2020 at 3:08 pm  Comments (1)  

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One CommentLeave a comment

  1. Loved your blog!! I believe there will
    be many who praise Jesus like never before when we are able to gather again. Be blessed brother in law!!


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