Monday, September 22, 2008

Wave after wave

I enjoyed the Fellowship Bible experience yesterday. There were so many things that were good: The worship was excellent and reverent with new and familiar hymns. The penny-whistle player was very good, especially in his trio with two children playing violin in a beautiful Irish tune. (Imagine having children to help lead worship!)

The teaching was stimulating and full of new insights. It was based on John 15 and the word Abide contained in those verses. Actually, the word is Remain in my version--I circled the word--it appears 9 times in verses 1-8. Power Point featured only the word "Abide" on two huge screens--it sat there and sank in as Jeff taught. His major point was that God wants us "to become" by abiding in Him--not in "doing", not in actions, not in only good works. It spoke to my soul--especially the teacher's comparison of life to surfing: If one misses a wave, or crashes and burns, there is always another wave--wave after wave of God's grace catches us and allows us to try again.

Then there was communion. I liked the way it was done. Served by both men and women, the bread and the wine were passed at the same time, with communicants being told to hold each one until all were served. With the large crowd, it took a while, so I sat there for several minutes holding the host bread and cup looking at it and feeling it--the roughness of the bread, the sparkling lights glowing in the wine. Then the minister said a few deep words about each element as we all ate the bread together and then drank the wine together. There was no hurry, no rushing the communion trays down the row, no gobbling the elements in a quick flick of the wrist--just abiding in his love and our communion.

So, the experience was good--not even counting getting to sit and worship with Brandon and Sheryl.

Thank you God for your waves of grace and love this day.

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