Sat Round The Table Of The King
(By Alban Smith-Adams)
As the person down to lead the evening service this week, I have instead been asked to supply you with some musings for the week. My assumption is that you will be able to ponder the same thoughts as I have as you sit at home deciding whether it’s time to tackle the 1000 piece jigsaw on the shelf.
I had been rather looking forward to the service which we were planning to have as the church’s first worship night with a few musician friends of mine coming in to lead us in song. I was looking forward to it for two reasons, the first being that it would involve little preparation on my part and the second being that it would be a chance for us to join with members of our church and of other churches across the locality to lift up our voices in union and pour out our hearts in worship.
As someone who has a fairly lengthy bus commute in the morning, I find it a great time to listen to some of my favourite worship songs and have a little bit of God time to reflect, pray and worship the Lord. It is something I very much enjoy and find to be great food for the soul. As quarantine has forced us to our homes, I have still found time for this most days in my room in between online lectures.
It is funny therefore that despite having the best sermons and the best songs available to me at the click of a button I find my heart crying out for the sound of the church piano and the voices of our church raised in song. Matthew 18:20 says ‘where two or three gather in my name, there I am with them’. I do not for one moment believe that this means that the Spirit is not with us in our quiet time alone, but it is most certain that as Christians we desperately need times of fellowship to build our faith and our spirits.
As we joined in song a few Sundays ago to sing the Stuart Townend “Communion Song”, I looked at the screen and saw many faces singing and there was a look of joy on many faces to as they felt that feeling of fellowship stirring in their hearts.
The nation has seen a 5% increase in prayer and church attendance (online) in these past weeks of isolation. It is clear that our world is crying out to join in fellowship and that we the church are the true provider of that. My message for you all then is when this quarantine at last comes to an end as we know it will, and when we may finally gather once again as a congregation, let us lift up our voices louder than ever before and proclaim the name of Jesus Christ until our throats are sore.
I hope that we will find a day to rearrange the worship evening and then we can join together in a wonderful night of praise, but for now I wish you all the best of health in mind, body and spirit until we can be together properly.