October 24, 2012 | In: MWPC, Worship Leading

Back in the Sanctuary

Wow! We’ve made it! We had our first worship service in our restored sanctuary, and it was wonderful!

The Martin Smith song “Shout To The North” was suggested at our Church Council meeting as fitting…as the bridge says, “We’ve been through fire…” I felt the song fit, so I added it as the last song in our playlist, but it didn’t hit me how apropos the words of the 3rd verse were until we were warming up:

Rise up church with broken wings
Fill this place with songs again
Of our God who reigns on high
By His grace again we’ll fly

Fill this place with songs again…that is what we were about to do! Songs to our God who reigns on high!

After some confusion on when folks were going to be allowed through the doors (“I thought we were doing a big unveiling…” “No, that idea was nixed 10 minutes ago…didn’t you get the memo?”) and pointing out that the choir’s opening number had been left off the worship program, we were ready to begin.

The choir opened up with the anthem “The Time For Singing Has Come!”

The worship team then led this set:
Shout to the Lord
My Savior, My God
Beauty for Ashes (another fire-themed song)
Shout To The North

After congregational prayer, the choir sang the anthem “Built On The Rock” which at one point states that “Built on the rock, the Church will stand, even when steeples are falling…”

The sermon was from 1st Peter 2: 4-10, urging us to be Living Stones built into a spiritual house based on the Cornerstone of Christ. After the sermon we celebrated the Lord’s Supper, then gathered in a circle around the sanctuary.

We had an elder at each of the cardinal points of the compass (fortunately our sanctuary is situated exactly east/west) and each in turn prayed to rededicate the sanctuary, each starting with the words from Psalm 107: 1-3: “Thank the Lord because the Lord God is good. That is what those whom the Lord has saved should say and those whom God has gathered from the east and west, north and south.” Pastor Lynell then prayed the closing benediction, and we sang again the bridge and chorus of “Shout To The North.”

It was a wonderful service, it was wonderful to be back in our own Sanctuary, and it was encouraging to rededicate the space to God’s work. Sure there were some technical glitches, but nothing that took away from the moment.


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