Last night I had a little God bumps moment with my daughter and other alumni of Houghton College. We are attending Alumni Weekend - she graduated in 2000, and I graduated in 2005 through the college's adult degree completion program. We were at the village church at a hymn sing which was accompanied most grandly on the piano by an alumnus of the college, with selections by a brass group, which was organized by another alumnus - and many members of his family. (I did wonder what would happen in that family if one were interested in woodwinds - they had multiple trumpets, trombones, and horns!)
We sang along through numerous hymns - and it was lovely. Then we got to the phrase "The trump shall resound, and the Lord shall descend." Tears welled up in my eyes as I pictured the glorious time when all the saints will be reunited in heaven with our Lord. I reached over to hug Heather's shoulders, and saw that she, too, was wiping tears from her eyes.
Only at alumni weekend at a place like Houghton College could so many graduates be singing hymns and be so happy about it! It surely wouldn't occur at many other institutions. What a blessing Houghton was to our daughter, and then to me!
Over the years, hymns and praise songs have often prompted tears. I remember singing "Here I Am, Lord" at church when Heather was a freshman at Houghton, and it happened to me that Sunday morning. That was the title of her high school English class autobiography project - I had typed it for her, and each chapter was titled by a different hymn. She had used it as an example of her best writing for application to the college's inaugural First Year Honors Program, and now she's been reunited with two of the young women with whom she studied in London during the spring of her freshman year.
During the closing of a Walk to Emmaus weekend where my mother was serving on team, I stood beside my father, singing "Because He Lives," I cried so hard then that he had to give me his hankie to mop up.
And Lord, haste the day when my faith shall be sight,
The clouds be rolled back as a scroll;
The trump shall resound, and the Lord shall descend,
Even so, it is well with my soul.