Hard, wooden pews. Old, brick building. An organ, a piano, and a hymnal. There is a subtle charm inside the walls of a small, faithful church. And something inspirational when they still use the old fashioned hymnals on the backs of the pews. I appreciate the contemporary sound in some services with drums and a rehearsed worship band, it can be very powerful and compelling. But I'll always have a special place in my heart for the hymns I grew up with, their poetic heartfelt lyrics, and familiar melodies.
Today we sang one I haven't heard in a long time.
"Little is much when God is in it! Labor not for wealth or fame. There's a crown and you can win it, if you go in Jesus name."
How true that is. I've seen it. If that statement is true, "little is much when God is in it," then the reverse must also be true, "much is little without God." How many times have we seen that sad story?
A moment later, a man walked to the pulpit to sing a special song. Usually this means an instrumental solo, or singing along with an accompaniment track. But this man carried the same hymnal we had been singing from and opened it to a new page. He said, "This song is for my parents. They had a marriage made in Heaven, and now they're there." The song he sang was,
"In the sweet by and by, we shall meet on that beautiful shore."
He sang the song acapella. Such a simple, un-elaborate gesture with no frills, yet it became so beautiful to all who saw it. Why? I suppose because God was in it.