These past few weeks have reminded me again how much I treasure the gathering of the church. I don’t so much miss going to a building, though buildings can be beautiful places to gather. I miss being with the gathered people of God—coming together to pray, sing, fellowship, and hear the preaching of God’s Word. It is a great kindness of God to allow us to walk together through this life, to share one another’s burdens, to comfort and encourage one another.
I’m praying that God will bring a swift end to the pandemic in days ahead, so we can once again gather as a church without fear of inadvertently doing one another harm. But even more, I’m praying that God will remind us how beloved the church is, that we would learn more deeply to treasure one another in Christ.
I was glad when they said to me,
“Let us go into the house of the Lord.”
How Dear and Treasured in the Church
How dear and treasured is the church,
With voices joined in praise and prayers,
For God has made us one in Christ,
To share our sorrows, joys and cares.
Entrusted with the truth of God,
Called out to make the gospel known,
We boldly as His church proclaim:
There’s grace and hope in Christ alone!
God fashions us as living stones;
Assembled as His dwelling place.
Though we were dead, He gives us life,
Each soul a miracle of grace.
Built as a buttress of the truth,
A pillar rising to the sky,
God sets His church before the world,
His Word and name to magnify.
To all the world we testify,
Our lives display in word and deed
The matchless worth of knowing Christ,
The boundless depth of our great need.
Brought near to God by Christ’s shed blood,
Loved and adopted as His own,
A household built upon the Word,
With Christ Himself the Cornerstone.
Built on this Rock, the church will stand,
The gates of hell shall not prevail,
All who are Christ’s shall be raised up,
The Word of God will never fail.
Words ©2017 Ken Puls
Download the lyrics and free sheet music for this hymn, including an arrangement of the tune ERHALT UNS HERR for classical guitar.