Sunday, January 29, 2012

Church People

   So today in church there were quite a few different people. There were the ones that have built the church. You know, the ones whose Daddy's and Mama's helped set the foundation of the original building. They are the ones who can tell you why the church split from the "Other" church down the street back in the early 70's. Maybe your church is older. Maybe your great Grandfather was a founding member and there is a plaque on the wall honoring his memory. So your roots go deep in the hardwood floors of the sanctuary. There were also the new families that joined about a year ago, maybe 5 years ago and they are serving in all the different kid's ministries and maybe the husband does usher duty on rotation. You have the 2nd generation of families that one or both parents grew up in that church mixed with the single college kids who just need a church during college semesters. There are those who left and came back and then you have that really awkward family that no one really likes cause the kids are weird and so are the parents, along with the family whose parents everyone likes but their kids are such brats you can't stand being around them. But there is also the single mother, the one who is searching for a family like atmosphere and the truth to be taught to her kids because she is so overwhelmed with single motherhood and working and all that school work. And the other mother who is separated but not divorced so it is really awkward talking to her because, well there is no one for your husband to talk to while you talk to her, and you can't really invite her anywhere because, well she isn't divorced but she isn't a couple and there is that awkwardness of asking how the marriage is, any chance of reconciliation or maybe divorce?

    Well, that is an uncomfortable subject for after church lunches and then again your husband wouldn't have a man to talk with so.....let's just wait to another day to minister to her family.  So, there they are, the two kinds of singles, both so awkward for the family get together after lunch ritual so prevalent in the church. The fellowship that binds the time of worship together into a family and friend relationship. It really is so hard when you just don't want to deal with problems on that pretty afternoon of rest. Don't look in the rear view mirror either as you pull out of the church parking lot on your way to meet friends, because you might see that single parent trying to explain to their kids, something they probably don't understand themselves; why no one invites them to the get togethers or over for lunch at their homes, or to the restaurants that are their favorite places to eat.

   You also might never know that the mother does take her kids out, but to a place where they may not run into your family and the other "real Christian families" so that her kids won't be hurt again by seeing all of you sitting together, with the tables pulled together, laughing and praying together before your meal. She takes them alone somewhere and she talks about the lessons learned at church that day, and bows her head to pray over the meal. Thankful that Jesus came to lunch with her and her broken family.

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