By Justin Rossow

When they said, “Let’s go to the house of God,” my heart leaped for joy. (Psalm 122:1, The Message)

Over the past few months I have had the privilege of seeing Byron in the hospital, at home, and in church. The last, by far, is his favorite.

To see By hold forth on a Sunday morning is to watch a man truly in his element, a man who loves and is loved by a family of faith.

Sundays are a time for seeing friends, sharing hugs, giving high fives. Sunday is a time for worship, and the Word, and the Supper that binds us all together.

It humbles me every time I put the bread of life into the feeble hand of this man of faith—it humbles me to know the joy and the longing Byron still has for his God and his church.

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I can’t help but think of the Psalm: “I was glad when they said to me, ‘Let us go to the house of the LORD!’” Byron rejoices in the fellowship of believers, he laughs in the community of the faithful, he exalts in the praise of his God.

When they said, “Let’s go to the house of God,” my heart leaped for joy. (Psalm 122:1, The Message)

In so doing, Byron points me back to what is most important about the joint life of the Christian community. In this family of faith, we have a unity that goes deeper than any other relationship, and it lasts forever!

As a pastor, Sunday mornings are part of my job, so there isn’t really a question of showing up or not. But I can’t seem to take a weekend off without the slippery question haunting the back of my mind, “Do you really have to go to worship this week? You’re on vacation …”

Byron doesn’t think like that. Byron doesn’t act like that. Byron would move heaven and earth to be among his faith family for worship on Sunday. It transforms his day, his week, his life.

I want to be like that, too. I want to revel in the presence of the faithful assembly. I want to long for the House of my God.

And I do. Almost always. But Byron reminds me what this community is all about: we love each other as Jesus loves us. What a gift!

Byron can’t wait to get to church on Sunday. And neither can I! I’ll see you there!

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Special thanks to Sarah Crowder, Byron’s daughter, for the use of this amazing video!