Yesterday I did something that I have never done on a Sunday morning. My wife and I got out of bed later than usual and went for a walk. We came home and enjoyed an excellent breakfast. Finally, we sat down and watched the worship program for our Church online. It was a wonderful morning, but something was missing.
I must admit I don’t miss the stress of a Sunday morning as a preacher. Most Sundays include arriving early and making sure the building is ready. Then I pray and practice my sermon. Any extra time I have remaining, I visit with people while trying to do any last-minute preparations for worship. It is a beautiful, emotionally draining time.
Each week we spend the first part of our worship program in song. It is a part of the morning that I thoroughly enjoy. I do long to hear the people of God singing praises to God. To listen to the truth of the faith being sung by people of all ages and backgrounds together is a powerful witness to the power of God.
We also take time on Sunday morning to pray and lift up the needs of our people. One high point every week is the sharing in communion. The Church focuses our attention on Jesus’ death for our sins. I enjoy all these elements when we meet together, but I can still do most of this at home.
The one thing I miss the most and the void in my life right now is for time with other believers. There is a deep joy in seeing people, both young and old coming together in the name of Jesus. We share our lives, our stories, and our personal victories. We pray for each other and carry one another burdens. We laugh, smile, cry, and open our hearts up to one another. The Church is not just a group of people who meet in the same building; we are the family of God. The absence of my brother and sisters in Jesus is weighing heavy on my heart.
This longing for community is not a bad thing. It reminds me of what I have in the Church that is so valuable. I have you.
I miss you.