Heinz makes the key point that worship is about advancing our spiritual lives, and that often comes at a cost. This is evident in the following real-life testimony of a parishioner, who has given me permission to share her experience.
Dear Fr. Al:
This past Sunday, you caught me as I was rushing in with baby Finn (and the Operation Christmas Child boxes), so as not to be late for the 9:30 service.
When you asked how we were doing, I gave a typical, rushed mom response of how my kids are and that we had made it. What I should have said was, “We are glad to be here!” and then asked about what is new with Al! I’ve been thinking all day about the conversation that I cut short because I was in a hurry, and I am so sorry if I offended you by not chatting longer. I sure am bummed I didn’t slow down and catch up with you… It’s been a while since we’ve talked, and that was the perfect opportunity! Anyway, I just wanted to say thank you for your response, first of all, for recognizing that it does take work to get to church (or anywhere with young kids, for that matter!).
But I also wanted to let you know that once I settled in upstairs, I was relaxed, filled with joy, and thoroughly enjoyed the 9:30 service, as I always do. I know it takes a lot of work to put on the service and wanted you and your team to know that it is much appreciated. The time and atmosphere of that service are perfect for our family life. I always come in breathing a sigh of relief that I even made it there (and that I didn’t forget to change out of my slippers!) and leave feeling fulfilled, rejuvenated, and refocused on God’s word.
So thank you, thank you, for continuing to provide an amazing environment in which we can worship. Until next time… when I will slow down and spend more time chatting,
May this be an encouragement, and an inspiration to all for 2016!