“It is good to praise the Lord and make music to your name, O Most High,
proclaiming your love in the morning and your faithfulness at night,” Psalm 92:1-2
I’ve never been a morning person. I am one of those people who take a while to get up and get going. But I must admit that one of my favorite parts of the day at Covenant happens first thing each morning.
As the students fill the hallways, hanging up backpacks and chatting with friends, there is an air of anticipation. Soon our entire community-students and teachers alike-gathers in the hall to begin our day with song. We sing from memory and in unison, from the smallest Kindergarten girls to the tallest high-school boys. We sing songs of faith and praise that have been been sung by countless generations of believers before us. We sing with joy and love and thankful hearts.
The practice of beginning our day with praise has quickly become a beloved tradition at Covenant. A new hymn is chosen each month, and after we sing, a blessing is given to start the day. This time of Morning Lauds draws us together in community, reminding us that we are all brothers and sisters in Christ. It allows for a moment of reflection and refocus before beginning the work that God has set before us. And it sets a tone of worship for the day that inspires a culture focused on Christ.
As we sing these hymns from memory, we inscribe their timeless truths on the hearts of the students. This is a gift that they can carry with them throughout their lives. Even when other facts and figures fade, these melodies will bring them back to the gospel truths imbedded in the lyrics.
Over the years, one of my greatest joys has been hearing from families how our Morning Lauds have impacted them. They tell me of the loud and joyous singing that happens when their children recognize the hymns in church, of younger siblings who have latched onto the hymns and sing them incessantly, and of extended family and friends spread abroad who join them in learning these precious songs. What a testimony to the hand of God at work in the broader Covenant community as we enter into worship together!
And though mornings may still find me groggy and slow, the practice of Morning Lauds has transformed mine into something I would not trade for anything.