I wanted to share an email with you that I received on the Sunday Picasso was baptized. It makes the days I posted about most recently so worth it in the end, even when I think I can’t get to the end! Picasso had called Preacher that morning, which I told you about already, but this is what that experience moved her to share with the Children’s committee and our senior minister. She has such a way with words (names have been changed for privacy purposes, although I think the only ones reading this blog know us personally anyway!)…
At 7:30 this morning I was rummaging through my bottom drawer where all the stuff I don’t really need this time of year is. I was looking for my swimsuit. “Who else is tearing-up-jack looking for their swimsuit in February so that can wear it to church?! For crying out loud!” I mumbled as I heard my cell phone buzz in the next room.
“Well, that’s just great – another teacher calling in absent for the morning!” I thought as I finally laid hand on the elusive black tankini that I wear under my robe when I baptize. Stumbling out of my closet and around the corner I find a new voicemail on my phone. Determined to be fully filled with the Spirit, by way of coffee, I grab my mug and settle myself at the kitchen island to listen to the message. After the automated voice that pleasantly informs me of my new message (“What’s she got to be so happy about!” I grouched), here is what I heard a small voice say:
“[Preacher], this is [Picasso] and I’m calling to tell you I am so excited that I didn’t even sleep! I am just so excited that today Jesus will become my forever friend. Being baptized is all I thought about for days and days. Today Jesus and I will be friends for ever and ever and I am just so excited I had to call you and tell you that I can’t wait until you baptize me this morning. I’ve got my swimsuit and I’ll see you at church.”
When I had cleared my vision of the tears that welled up in my eyes I had no choice but to hit the floor of my kitchen, right in front of the dishwasher, and thank God for reminding me what today is all about – what EVERYDAY is all about. There is nothing as precious as the opportunity to tell someone about Jesus Christ. Introducing people to the Lord of all creation as their personal Savior is all that is eternal.
This morning, as all church leaders do on Sunday morning, I had my mind appropriately focused on the details of our worship experience. Were all of my volunteers in place? Would I have enough substitutes to cover my volunteer positions? Factoring in the holiday weekend, three church retreats that will call people out of town and the conjunctivitis that is going around, how many kids will I average today anyway? Then there is the worship: Do I have all the songs I need loaded and ready? Is my media for the lesson in place? How about this lesson on Ezekiel – will it come off the way I wanted it to? Then there is the CPR training after church. I wonder if someone will be there to let them in before the class? I guess I’ll need to do lock-up today? So that means no lunch…well I guess I’ll have to eat breakfast then….
All of these necessary, but tedious details, had completely eclipsed what was really the main event of the morning – immersing a child into the Kingdom of God. Taking her small hand and placing it into the nail scarred hand of her Savior who has been watching and waiting for her to announce to the world that she believes in him for 8 little years. All this time he has been waiting to hear what I heard on that message this morning. A small, sweet voice say: I’m so excited about Jesus that I can’t even sleep until I tell everyone what I know!
If you got this email, you are a church leader and someone who I think might also get caught up, unintentionally, in the temporal details of Sundays. Well, really, of everyday. Everyday is an opportunity to acknowledge the eternal as we navigate through the temporal and determine that we will remain focused on matters of the Kingdom. A Kingdom we will relentlessly pursue until the day Christ comes back to take us, and all those we’ve told about him, to worship God forever.
So I’m suited up and ready to go. All I can think about as I maniacally try to finish this email so I can load my laptop in my bag is: I’m so excited today that someone will come to know their Savior1 I’m pretty sure all of heaven is waiting with baited breath for me to walk a nervous, shaking little 8 year old girl down the aisle to confess her love for Jesus Christ. It really is the Main Event of the day.