I’m excited to bring this song to the Lighthouse Church worship experience! House of the Lord is a spirit lifting and unifying anthem that, when we stand together and sing it out, we will see God move among us in incredible ways. Or perhaps better to say, we will bask in the profound truth of this song, BECAUSE he is already among us! That’s a moment I’ve envisioned since I listened to this song. It also brings me back to those words we’ve sung many times now together from “Awake my Soul” by Hillsong Worship: “When he moves and when we pray, where stood a wall now stands a way,” and that powerful imagery of, “the bowels of hell begin to shake!” I hope you know the authority our corporate worship has over everything that come against us!
There are two words in this song that hold incredible power. The first & principle word is JOY. I know I don’t appreciate enough the daily miracle that is JOY! When God is involved, there is no context in which Joy cannot be found. I’m thankful for the times of complete Joy and bliss, when the Joy of the Lord has complete reign over my life. Worshiping with you, my church family, is a great example. I’ve also been aware of it in the midst of everyday life. At home, when the kids are all playing peacefully together and Brittany and I find a moment to have a coffee and play a game of crib, I feel the warmth of God’s joy in my heart. (Though just now I realize that might have been the coffee). In all seriousness it’s the joy referred to in Psalm 16:11:
“You make known to me the path of life; You will fill me with in your presence, with eternal pleasures at your right hand.”
The joy spoken of here is in the day to day moments of life lived in his presence! It is his faithfulness embodied in little moments. If there is one challenge I get from this it is to thank God for these moments as they happen and not just in retrospect!
Then there is the joy spoken of in Psalm 27:6:
“Then my hand will be exalted above the enemies who surround;
at his sacred tent I will sacrifice with shouts of joy
I will sing and make music to the Lord.”
If you take the picture of Joy I’ve already painted and zoom out, you’ll see that as I’m playing crib with Brittany, kids playing around us, there is an army of the enemy surrounding. Thank God for joy as a weapon; acting as a force field protecting us! Even as I write this on the anniversary of losing my best friend, I prepare to go to church and sing “There’s joy in the house of the Lord!” Our church has experienced a lot of tragedy in the past couple years, on top of living through something like Covid and the polarization of our culture. It’s so easy to feel defeated and discouraged. How frustrating then for Satan that we stand strong and rejoice in the Joy of the Lord!
This is how Phil Wickham describes the author of this (what I am officially coining) “miraculous joy:”
“We worship the God who was,
We worship the God who is,
We worship the God who evermore will be
He opened the prison doors,
He parted the raging sea,
My God, he holds the victory”
“We sing to the God who heals,
We sing to the God who saves
We sing to the God who always makes a way
‘Cause he hung up on that cross
Then he rose up from that grave
My God’s still Rolling Stones away”
The Bridge speaks to the outcome of owning this Joy!
“We were the beggars, now we’re royalty
We were the prisoners, now we’re running free
We are forgiven, accepted, redeemed by His grace
Let the house of the Lord sing praise!”
As we look to the chorus then, we come to the second of the two key words; The word that makes it all come alive to me.
“There’s joy in the house of the Lord, TODAY”
Today! As in right now! As in the very moment you find yourself in. The house of the Lord is now with his people so God resides wherever you are. So when we gather Sunday morning and declare this Anthem, we also sing,
“Our God is surely in THIS PLACE!”
May we respond in action as we proclaim with our voices,
“And we won’t be quiet, We shout out Your Praise!”
A lot of our worship is extolling what God can do, or what God has already done. I’m excited, with this song, to celebrate the God who is here and now. The experience of God’s miraculous JOY!