Monday, October 28, 2013

Oh Sister, Who Art Thou?

And let us consider how we may spur one another on toward love and good deeds, not giving up meeting together, as some are in the habit of doing, but encouraging one another—and all the more as you see the Day approaching.  Hebrews 10: 24-25

Recently, I have found myself face to face with two different Christian sisters whom I "knew" at a congregation I once attended for several years.   Both women happened to be ministers' wives.  Neither quite remembered me. 

First, you notice I have the word knew in quotes.  My meaning is that we met one another; we talked; we spoke in the hallways of the church building.  We even had common friends or acquaintances.  We had shared history at times involving third parties whom we both knew and with whom we (separately) had been close.  But we never got to be close friends.  

I found myself wondering why these women didn't remember me.  Our children were the same or close ages.  But we had a huge youth group at that congregation.  I also found myself to be decidedly not miffed by the experiences!  Praise God!  You see, IT'S NOT ABOUT ME!   It's about the Church, the family of God; most importantly, it's about the work Christ did for us in His life, His death, and resurrection and the work He is still doing in us because of our shared family time at that church. 

Because of that congregation of people, I grew as a person.   I made the choice to educate my two youngest sons at home due to the influence of people in that church and the support and friendships I was blessed with and still enjoy.  My husband and I were referred by one of those ministers to a wonderful Christian counselor who helped us save our broken marriage; we are eternally grateful for that gift!  I discovered a new outlet for writing during those years - used in script writing for children's ministry for several years both at that congregation and my current church home.  Most of all, I learned that even in a congregation of 1000+ people, there was work for me to do in God's name.  There are souls who touched my heart; there are friendships which developed, and though we rarely see one another, there is still joy and love when we reunite.  It was a place to grow in so many ways that I didn't even know I needed when circumstances took us there.  It also taught me that when you are part of the Lord's body, home is close; family is just under the steeple; it showed me a glimpse of heaven for which I long - unity, love, family.  

Lest you get the wrong idea, it was not a perfect church experience.  Far from it!   I have yet to find a perfect church on earth.  I don't think I even need to search.  I know from study of scripture that the church will be  perfected only in our heavenly home when the work of Christ has completed us and our growing in this world is finished.   Until then, please join me in singing "When We All Get to Heaven."

Pressing on in Him,


Footnote:  I noticed when reading back through this that I am using "I" a lot (just as I am in this footnote!)  Please overlook that usage and understand that the true focus here is Christ and the work He is doing and has done in me and those Christian sisters.  For though we don't know each other well, I know that God has led them both through very trying circumstances in the last few years and is blessing them both with continue growth in His work.     LSP 

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