I received a rather lovely prayer stone at church today as part of the sermon. Then, while the speaker was still talking, I proceeded to drop mine under the chair and had to scrabble around until I retrieved it. Bad church person! Always good to be the reason for laughter in church though … Anyway, I think I’m going to take the stone to the office to see if it helps with my week – if not, I’ll just clunk people with it. Thank You.
In my old home, a friend and I used to drive past a church which had the sign saying “God is always with us” outside. Every time, my friend would say “Yes, that’s the trouble, isn’t it?” which always made me smile. But, to be honest, she wasn’t wrong. Sometimes it’s much more fun to be naughty than to be godly, and the thought that You are always with us can be a bit of a downer, I have to say. Sorry. Oh, but thank You that You are always with us as in the end I do know it’s really the only way I can get by.
I have to say how lovely it was to skip church yesterday, and go and work on the allotment instead. It was really very enjoyable indeed, and I will definitely do that again without feeling guilty. It’s good to know that You don’t exist solely in a church on a Sunday, but are right there amongst the plants and the soil and the sunshine, and in the general camaraderie of allotment life as well. As well, of course, as being at the very heart of our being and existence. Thank You.
Please could You see Your way to making sure the preacher doesn’t go on too long on a Sunday? There’s a limit to the amount of holiness I can take in all at one go, and any sermon of more than 8 minutes is likely to lose me entirely. 6.5 minutes would be ideal. At that point, I’m starting to worry about lunch, or what I need to do in the garden, or how the last precious day of my weekend is slowly vanishing away and I really, seriously don’t want to be spending the majority of it in church.
Oh, and while I’m on, please could You make sure the hymns aren’t pitched too high? I’m not a natural soprano from any angle and so a few keys lower would be greatly appreciated, by me and by the rest of the congregation, I’m sure. Thank you.
Church is seriously weird, isn’t it? I’m not a great fan of get-togethers anyway and I don’t like having to be nice to people on more days than a Sunday. I’m quite happy to go along, sing the hymns, read the bible and listen to the talk and pray the prayers, but then having to chat to people over coffee makes my head spin. It’s really hard having to pretend to be nice, You see, and acting the part of a Good Christian Woman for a whole hour plus coffee time is really more than enough for one week. I have to be extra bad on a Monday in order to make up for it. Your universe, after all, loves balance.
I think it’s the Sunday Lying that’s the last straw – it’s so very hard to avoid. Only last week, I found myself telling a member of the new church I’m going to that I hadn’t been able to sing the hymns properly (due to a sore throat) but I’d sung them anyway in my heart. Gross! I didn’t even recognise myself saying those words and thought I might laugh the moment I’d said them, but to my shame I did feel pleased that the woman looked quite impressed. But really! What could I be thinking??
And then only this week, I found myself reacting with enthusiasm to the minister’s suggestion that I consider officially joining the church now I was a regular attender, even though I hate joining churches, and I’m much better off sitting at the back and slipping away when the worship is done. So, God, if You could try to ensure that next time I go to church I don’t get swopped at the door on my way in with some kind of holy woman who gets me into all sorts of worthy activities I don’t need to be part of, that would be great. Thank you.