Straining

This morning, we were blessed to be in a worship service where an amazing bass player “did his thing.” His dad and I were thrilled to hear him play his string bass at the Christmas Eve service and today he was playing his electric bass; it was grand!!

The kids’ church celebrates communion every Sunday and today was no exception. We love worshiping in different places. It inspires and refreshes us. Taking communion with them today was wonderful.

As the Pastor and servers prepared to distribute the elements, I noticed that John was the only musician remaining on the platform. Still holding his bass, he was attentive to the reading of scripture and prayer of the Pastor. As the bread and the cup were passed he started to play the haunting melody of “O Come, O Come Emmanuel.” An unusual bass solo, it was stark and low and compelling.

But, it was difficult for me to hear the melody. The sound system was set in such a way that I had to strain to hear his solo. As the servers made their way throughout the congregation, there were the hushed sounds of plates being passed and of cups being taken from and returned to their special trays. There were whispered “thank yous” and quiet tones of indistinguishable words. Nothing was out of order, but I had to strain to hear the music.

I had to focus my attention. And, because I was working so hard to the melody, the distractions faded away as my thoughts turned to the words of the song and the meaning of communion.

The communion elements are incredibly simple, cup and bread. And yet communion is so very complicated: blood and body; King of kings and newborn baby; one who was without sin bearing all of our sins; the Son of God becoming my personal Savior.   To understand and to appreciate communion, I must strain, I must push forward, I must focus.

It was a wonderful morning to remember that relationship does not come without effort, without struggle.

As we gather together with family and friends and God, may we remember that the love that grows is worth more than all of the strain, the struggle, and the effort. And, as the old song goes, “It will be worth it all…”

Love,

Jill (just one of God’s kids)

But he said to me, “My grace is sufficient for you, for my power is made perfect in weakness.” Therefore I will boast all the more gladly of my weaknesses, so that the power of Christ may rest upon me. (2 Corinthians 12:9)

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