World Communion Sunday

Church was a unique experience this morning in Henderson at the corner of Washington and Main. I suppose it’s always unique, but this morning, it seemed especially so. For me it started when I arrived and saw the chalice and the trays on the table in the kitchen. Today is World Communion Sunday, and as the elements were placed on the table in the sanctuary in preparation for the first worship service, I was moved, considering that Christians all over the world were gathering at the same table–Christ’s table.

As the elements were placed on the table, Whitney, Randy and I (Vallerie is out of town this weekend) were warming up to lead worship. It was kind of problematic–not terrible because Whitney still rocked on the guitar and we all love “Did you Feel the Mountains Tremble,” which was our last song of the day–but we had some issues. We all had junk in our throats, I couldn’t get the timing right on my solo and we weren’t really feeling the communion song. But a check of the time revealed that there wasn’t any more–it was time for worship to begin.

As we worshiped, so many things reminded me that none of the events mentioned in the previous paragraph matter. We were not there to sound great or have good timing or even like the songs. We were there to worship God, our audience of One, as Rev. John reminded us.

Speaking of Whitney, she joined the church this morning–another thing that made a unique service. At the second service, we also welcomed new members Pam, Becky and Bob.

My heart was broken at both services as I heard about a man who lives in his car and sleeps each night within a block of our church. The reality of this situation is still bringing tears to my eyes. I feel sick about it and wonder how our church can be Jesus to this man. Pray that we would be faithful to God’s call. And pray for me, because I complain about stupid stuff and I’m ashamed because my problems are not really problems when you consider a man who sleeps in his car.

I was also moved by the humble actions of our minister this morning. We are currently without an organist because our choir director and organist resigned at the end of August. We are in the process of hiring a Music Director (20 hours a week, good salary if you know anyone) for our church, but for now we are relying on subs. Well, October is proving to be a difficult month to cover. Rev. John has maintained the attitude of patience. He doesn’t know what to do, but he is encouraging all of us to wait on the Lord.

Well, he waited and God nudged Rev. John! This morning, he played the piano (in addition to preaching) at the second service. What a humble way to serve the congregation. It would have been easy for him to say, “Not my job!” and wait for someone else to step up, but he set a strong example of what it means to serve.

Another thing that did my heart good this morning: Before the 10:30 service, I spoke to the children in attendance and assured them that even though there was no children’s sermon today, we would still have children’s church and I would make sure they knew when it was time. I guess 8 year old Italia wasn’t so sure I’d remember her because as I headed to the water fountain before the service began, I realized I had a shadow. I spun around and there was she was, her shoes in her hands.

Me: Tali, it’s not time for children’s church yet. And why aren’t you wearing your shoes?
Italia: Ms. Becky, this is holy ground!

Well, they have been learning about Moses. In fact, today, there was even a 10 Commandments rap. My favorite part went something like this:

“Obey your mom and pop
and you’ll have fun!
And never, ever
murder anyone! Yeah!”

One more great thing that happened to me, right as I was writing this. My friend Walt stopped in the youth room to see me. He sat down and talked to me about what’s going on with him and listened to me as I shared, too. That’s what World Communion Sunday is about, I think. We are all at thsi table together.