Proper church work is God’s work; and it’s important! And I believe it! But can we just take a moment and be honest! While reading my commentary, please provide a bit of lee- way, this is the blog of a grace guzzling sinner that attends worship service for worship!
There is much buzz on media outlets as to church etiquette, how to make visitors feel welcome, how to make new parents feel welcome, how to make new couples feel welcome, and the lists and suggestions go on and on. The writers and sites suggest everything from up beat greeters, to better bathroom signs, to larger and more equipped nurseries, and coffee makers in the foyer. A new testament church has a Divine purpose and a Divine commandment. Churches desire visitors; churches are excited about spreading the gospel; churches will not survive without growth. But hang on to this reading for just a second, because we’re about to get real!
Life is hard y’all. Sunday mornings are not an exception to the rule. As a mom, we strive for pressed and suitable with brushed teeth and clean hair. The Lord’s House is a big deal! It’s 9:45 and after a storm-tossed morning of flat irons, missing shoes, and stepped in dog poop, the family is now stationary on the pew! [You feel me?]
There it is… you feel it – God’s peaceful presence! The still quiet moment when you realize you made it before devotional and let’s be honest… you are praising HIM loudly in your heart and even doing some sort of David- like mom dance on the inside. Fast forward, praise and worship service is beginning. You’re focused on YOUR worship and God’s word. You’re SO focused even that you failed to notice lil’ Susie drawing on her leg or the five trips the person behind you made to the foyer! You are soaking up that sermon because it’s been a rough week; you are soaking up the sermon because God provided the perfect words to resolve your situation. In just a few days, you’ve dodged sin; tripped over it; and then rolled in it like a dog immediately after it’s bath! You’ve been before the Lord time after time during the course of the seven days, praising, crying, begging. The tears are beginning, the heart is stretching, and the Holy Spirit is working.at.that.moment! [Praise Jesus you all that He works in those moments! Amen!!] The service has ended and you are quiet, focused and may be even a bit reserved. You’ve just been through a worship service! Just.Walked.Through.It. It’s fresh. You may appear calm, but your spirit is exhausted from giving it all to Him.
Cue to the end of the service. Foyer. Parking Lot. You do your best to smile and say hello. You’ve just worshiped your heart out and maybe don’t feel as if you are the most adequate to meet and greet. TA-DA… the LEE-WAY moment – while you were taking stock of the church and checking it’s fit for your family; my pew was heavy with out-pouring to Him. I want you to come back! I want you to experience the ever presence of the Holy Spirit. I want you to be able to find the restroom. I want you to use our nursery. I want you to enjoy the service. I want YOU to experience what I just walked through! I desire for others to have that relationship with Him. I want you to love our church just as I do! But today, if you will, my friend, our visitor, I am here for the price He paid for my sin and the debt of love I owe. I am here to worship! Catch me next Sunday for the meet and greet.