Making Room For Each Other
During the children’s moments last week, the kids arrived to the altar rail before I did. Normally I’m the first to sit down, and they sit around me. We had a large group that day, and they sat so closely together, where I normally sit. I asked them, “Is there room for me?”
Some of them giggled and scooted closer together, but some of them moved further apart and offered me space to sit down. It was an “aha!” moment for us all to realize how important it is to create and offer spaces for one another in the Church. Sometimes this means giving up our “favorite” seat in the pews (Remember that it’s not ‘my pew’ or ‘your pew’: it’s God’s!). Sometimes it means creating a new ministry or opportunity to engage more people in the life of the congregation. What matters most is that we are inviting one another, offering space for them to experience God’s love, and providing opportunities to grow closer to him.
There is no better time to ‘return’ to the Lord than Holy Week. Notice I didn’t say Easter. Just as during Advent we ‘prepare him room’ in our hearts leading up to Christmas. During Lent we heed the prophet, Joel’s, command to return to the Lord with our heart. Let’s start making space for one another leading up to Easter Sunday, and let’s begin filling spaces with our own presence, too. This is a perfect time to return in person for those who are able to do so.
Come feel the gentle brush of a palm branch on your shoulder as a child walks down the aisle saying, “Hosanna!” on Palm Sunday.
Come hear the click of lights going out as your eyes adjust to the sudden darkness on Holy Thursday.
Come sit in the uncomfortable silence of a mostly empty sanctuary broken only by the words, “Forgive them, for they know not what they do,” on Good Friday.
The dawn of Easter morning will be all the brighter, and we will be all the better for showing up and making room for each other!
all good things to each of you,