These days it's all about diving in headfirst.
We're not just getting ready for Holy Week and Easter at Zion. We're preparing for the ZOOM House Gala on Saturday night. Last year we raised $45,000 in four hours - it's kind of a big deal. We're also getting ready to host a booth at the Lyndale Open House on Friday. Last year I talked to dozens of neighbors passionate about the community we share - it makes me proud to be part of this place.
Oh and we bought a new house! We've been looking for awhile now, but it happened suddenly. They accepted our offer 25 hours after it went on the market. A little more space and a lot more wallpaper just a few blocks from where we are now. Matt and I are excited to have a new project to share and imagine this being home for awhile. We close in four weeks.
That also means we're scrambling to get our current abode on the market. The goal is early April, so the dumpster shows up tomorrow. Let's get this party started.
I noticed that others are diving in headfirst today, too. One of our faithful Wednesday night regulars has been taking a break for a few months. She needed to reboot and pull out of most of her routine and commitments, so we stayed in touch by phone while she was away. Tonight she was back and happened to sit next to someone who has started coming faithfully since she went on sabbatical. Within a few minutes they were both teary eyed.
I felt at home right away at Zion.
This place has been so good to me.
People remembered my name the second time I showed up.
I feels good to belong.
A new friendship formed and they were both diving in - professing their place in this community and God's family. It made me glad to watch. They showed up to worship where we read from Colossians and talked about the way Christ's resurrection threads everything together - from creation to life everlasting. People shared about the things that stirred them in the text. We admitted the frazzled and tired things that get sewn into the fabric of Christ...and that remembering this helps a little bit.
We always end Recovery Worship with a hymn request and tonight it was Henry* who couldn't wait to call it. Henry has some sensory sensitivities and might be somewhere on the spectrum, but what do I know? He speaks with the official tone of a radio announcer and I love to listen to him sing. It took me awhile to find it because I believed it to be under a different title. But once it was found, I knew it would be a good choice. It's "Shall We Gather at the River", which is number 423 in your hymnal. This is the one we should sing.
And so we did. With gusto. And then, when the room cleared, it was just me and Henry. I always thought it should be called, "Shall We Gather IN the River". Everyone is going to get wet when they get baptized anyway. For convenience sake, they should just agree to all meet IN the river instead of next to it. That would save a step and they could get baptizing right away.
Yes, Henry. Let's dive in. Let's skip a step and get messy doing it. Let's gather in the river where the waters of life overwhelm and we're washed clean and things begin anew. Let's do this.