Today - Sunday - is a very exciting day at my church, First Presbyterian of Brandon, Florida. For the first time, since we added a second, contemporary, service over a decade ago, we're all gathering at one time for a combined worship experience (with a whole bunch of extra chairs squeezed in where we can).
- The Praise Band will play - and the (traditional) choir will join in.
- The organ will lead the hymn singing - and the Praise Band will crank it up a notch.
- The pastoral prayer will be similar to the 11:00 service format - then we'll respond with the sung Lord's Prayer from the 8:30 worship team.
- Rebekah will be preaching... and Tim will be preaching... at the same time!
It's going to be fun to teach the "sung Lord's Prayer" to the 11:00 crowd. It's going to be a treat to all worship together, at the same hour (and a half!). It will be more than awesome to stretch our building to its limits.
Then what's really cool - as regards my ongoing journey through Lent, is this outrageous "Pause for Extravagant Celebration" during the middle of what can so often be a solemn time. Today, just when we might be beginning to stumble on our journey to the cross.... BAM!!! - WHAM-O!!! - there it is. A cymbal crash of bodacious, spontaneous praise.
We're doing all of this, on this particular day, to dedicate this critical phase of our ongoing "Vision for the Future" initiative, building ministry and the physical space where ministry happens; it's been over five years in the making. This community of faith is moving forward, animated, passionate, inspired, motivated, activated, and allowing itself to be directed by our common commitment to follow Jesus.
I'm not a big "amen"-er. But I will to this post. Amen, and AMEN!