So I attended a ward other than my own this last Sunday. It was a good meeting, somewhat interesting, but good. But as the meeting kept rolling and then came to a close it was obvious the meeting was lacking. It was a fast and testimony meeting but even with the testimonies that were shared something was missing.
I sat near the back in the cultural hall. As always the meeting began with an opening hymn and there was not a book in sight in the back where I sat. I don't recall exactly what song was played. It was not an unusual hymn but one that we don't all know the words to without a book in front of us. I sat and hummed along but wished I could sing the words.
Then the sacrament hymn rolled around and again it wasn't an unusual song choice but still not one of the most common. Again, I looked around for a book and again I began to hum along. No one near me had a hymn book and thus no one sang along. Although those in front had books I felt as if there were only a handful of people singing this hymn about our Savior. The room felt quiet and the words could not be heard.
The meeting closed with yet another hymn of less than familiar words and yet again I hummed along. In some ways I felt robbed of a portion of the meeting that I must so often take for granted. I felt an inner battle and desire to sing out. Because I was unable to participate in the meeting by singing the Hymns and because others didn't take the opportunity to participate I felt that I couldn't fully wrap myself in the Spirit of the meeting.
I have never to this point fully realized the power that the Hymns have in our meetings and in our lives. I missed them last week and I fully enjoyed the Spirit that they brought to the meeting this week as I sung out.