I was reading a commentary on the book of First Corinthians that started out by saying the book was written for a church that was experiencing great divisions. Some of the divisions were along ethnic lines. Others were divisions in theological beliefs. What is painful is the fact that parties on all sides of the dividing line claimed to be following what their faith taught them.
Most of the time I would not think that the request was strange at all. “Is it ok if I give you a hug?” This time the question came out of the blue. I had asked for a ride to the airport. After I got into the car the driver greeted me. She noticed my last name and said when she was in high school there was a school nurse who had the same last name. My response was to say, “you must have attended Maryvale High School.” The woman was shocked and said that she did and wondered how I could have known that. I told her that my mother had been the nurse at Maryvale for many years.
An unseen voice spoke, “follow the pall bearers…” I couldn’t help but think about how many funeral processions I had participated in over my lifetime. In the silence of the moment the pall bearers picked up the stretcher with the shrouded body on it and led the group of people from the chapel where the Good Friday service began to a tomb in another building, where the service would end, with a giant stone being rolled into place.
“I’m just so tired of the same old-same old,” he said as we talked about the future of the church. When I asked what he meant, the man said that we have known for years that the church needed to move into a greater level of online engagement, but “we wouldn’t do it until the pandemic forced us to change.” Forced us to change…