“I was glad when they said unto me, “Let us go into the house of the Lord.” Psalm 122:1
That morning I saw a truly beautiful sight – people of all ages and economic backgrounds hurrying to worship God.
There is a wonderful evangelical church about a mile or so from our mission-owned house in Quito that holds worship services on Saturday nights and at 7:30, 9:30 and 11:30 on Sunday mornings. That day we were getting out of our truck about 7:25 a.m. headed to the early service when we noticed some people parking their fancy cars, others walking from nearby streets, and still others streaming from the trolley station, all moving at a fast pace in the same direction where we were going. The faces were eager and expectant, and the voices gave us a happy greeting. Indigenous, Afro-Ecuadorians, gringos (like us), upper and lower class Quitenos (citizens of Quito), young and old, dressed in jeans or in Sunday suits, each of us had the same goal – assembling in the house of the Lord for praise, worship, prayer and instruction in God’s Word.
Steve and I estimated that 700 chairs were available. Within minutes every single one of them was filled, and 70-80 people lined the walls. No one left because their needs weren’t going to be comfortably accommodated. There was just an unmistakable sense that everyone who was in the room wanted to be there and was grateful to have a place of any kind.
The music was powerful and well-planned. The words, melodies, and rhythms took us all from quiet meditation to a lively crescendo of fast-paced celebration and then back again to peaceful, private reflection. The prayers were fervent and personal. The pastor’s sermon was passionate and pertinent. The ordinance of the Lord’s Supper was challenging and convicting. Every aspect of the service pointed us to God and His holiness. At the end of nearly two hours, we would have gladly stayed longer, but another large congregation was eagerly waiting to come into God’s house. As we filed out in an orderly, although shoulder-to-shoulder fashion, the second group was streaming in with the same hopeful, excited faces and attitudes that we had displayed when our group congregated. Together, we had participated in a time of genuine adoration and praise for our Heavenly Father. OUR Heavenly Father. It occurred to me that we would one day be in a similar gathering around the throne of God, people from every race, tribe and tongue glorifying the Lord in heaven. I am anticipating a whole new level of eagerness as that time approaches.
Psalm 95:1-2, 6 “Oh come, let us sing to the Lord! Let us shout joyfully to the Rock of our salvation. Let us come before His presence with thanksgiving; let us shout joyfully to Him with psalms. Oh come, let us worship and bow down; let us kneel before the Lord our Maker.”