“Everyone coming out of the church was laughing and smiling – it was just full of life.”
That was the comment made by a friend who was coming to our church to drop off his daughter, the best friend of my daughter. They had come from out of town and made it just as our last service was ending. I’m not sure you could have said anything else that would have made me smile so much.
What more are we looking for if not for the spark of life in people? I can promise you that many of those who were laughing and smiling don’t have it easy. There are family tensions and illnesses. There are job struggles and school challenges. There are financial burdens and uncertain futures. But they come into the presence of God and they laugh. They smile. They have these wonderful moments that remind them of God’s promise of life and peace that passes understanding.
That’s what church on the inside should be, I think. There’s lots of discussion about what the church should be on the outside – out in the world joining God in His care for the poor and the oppressed, those whose struggle is life-threatening. Those are good discussions. But, the reality of who we can be on the outside flows from who we are on the inside.
When we allow God to meet us on the inside of the church, we have much more to take outside the church. It takes both the inside and the outside to make the church powerful, effective and fruitful. I’m glad to be connected with such a church.
Holy high-five to you,