Sunday morning I arrived at church feeling a little discouraged about the whole “living in community” thing. We sat down in our usual spot, right next to a woman I had just met the previous Sunday. As we sang together in worship, I noticed my new acquaintance growing emotional. The Spirit nudged my memory, and I fished out of my pocket an unused kleenex that I had stashed for some forgotten reason when I taught Sunday school during the first service. She gratefully accepted my small offering, but the tears continued to come. I placed my hand on her shoulder to comfort her and asked if I could get something else for her – more kleenex, water . . . – she declined, trying to steady her emotions. I left my hand on her shoulder, wondering if I was to do more.
A moment later, her efforts proved futile and her emotions overcame her. In that instance, another friend of mine was by her side (from the aisle over), offering to go with her into the prayer room. Yet two more friends joined them while they were there.
As the teaching began, I thanked God for such a tangible reminder of community. None of us knew her very well (or at all), but each of us had been strategically placed that morning to play a part in being community. What a privilege! In the midst of ministering to someone else, my heart was greatly ministered to as well. Isn’t that the amazing thing about living in community? In fact, I guess it’s something that always amazes me about God. Through the same situation, same circumstances, same event . . . he can teach each person something different, but equally profound.
How about you? What’s sticking with you this week?