Monday, December 19, 2011


There were five of us Sunday morning who visited the Detention Center for worship with the kids, but the two women in our group declined to speak, Tony’s wife along for her first experience in such matters. Mark, my son-in-law, dealing with much on his mind lately, merely played a couple of carols on his saxophone and then yielded the floor, leaving this old man and Tony close to an hour to fill with something other than just another sermon. Chapter and verse, as far as I’m concerned, belongs in a classroom. We don’t go to teach them Scripture, but to share Christ, and the best way to do that, it seems to me, is to relax, allowing Him to come forth. Indeed, that specific theme was where the Holy Ghost had us both focused, weaving our individual portions together so as to speak of the possibility of “knowing” His reality, not just accepting denominational dogma… My church, last night, presented its yearly Christmas pageant, each production growing as we go, this occasion possessing a full orchestra seated mid-stage, the usual musicians, otherwise, occupying the darkness to their left and the choir loft on their right stuffed with the properly positioned ranges of the human vocal potentials. The sanctuary was packed, folding chairs added until emergency escape would have hard, if not impossible, to accomplish. I stood in the rear by the sound booth awhile and then left, the whole affair a bit too much for me, nice, but not meeting me on the inside, my fault, no doubt, not theirs… I am reinstituting a tradition this holiday, one practiced for more than a decade and then abandoned out of a sense that it had lost its “flow”. Spontaneity, doing things from an impulse, a feeling that triggers the event, not because the date or anything else suggests it, is my idea of how it ought to be. It just seems right this time around, though, to once more give each one of my daughters a card, expressing my heart, making sure that they know it is yet strongly connected to them. Call it an “anchor-line” or a spiritual “umbilical cord”, but we all need, at times, on either end of that bond, to be reassured of its existence. I know I do with Him…

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