Yesterday, on Good Friday, I listened to the Royal Choral Society sing Handel’s Messiah at the Royal Albert Hall.
Gorgeous, glorious, a worship experience in itself. I sat still for most of it tears streaming down my face, as I listened to prophecies of the gentle lamb that was slain, who before his shearers was dumb, who becomes the lamb upon the throne hailed by ecstatic choirs:
Blessing and honour, glory and power
Be unto Him, be unto Him
That sits upon the throne, and unto the Lamb
Worthy is the Lamb that was slain
And has redeemed us to God, by His blood
To receive power and riches, and wisdom
And strength, and honour, and glory, and blessing
And who, as the Kingdom of this world becomes the Kingdom of our Lord, and of his Christ, in the ultimate triumph of meekness and gentleness, is worshipped as the King of Kings, and Lord of Lords who shall reign forever and ever.
* * *
Tradition has it that moved by the majesty of the music, King George II stood as the Hallelujah Chorus began, and remained standing. And following the custom of standing when the King stood, the entire audience stood too.
Certainly, everyone in the Royal Albert Hall stood yesterday–the music was too majestic not to!!–though, in America, some in audiences insist on remaining seated through it.
* * *
Legend has it too that Handel’s servant came upon soon after he composed the Hallelujah Chorus and reported him saying, “I did think I saw heaven open, and saw the very face of God.” I don’t doubt it. The music is divine!
And if the music in heaven is anything like The Hallelujah Chorus, my, what a treat we have in store for us.
Linking with Laura Boggess http://www.lauraboggess.com/