Monday, April 10, 2017

Spirit of Helping

My mom was a helper. She enjoyed filling a need and could step in to most any task at any point and help it be successful.  Do you need a cook? She could do that. Do you need a florist? She could do that! Do you need a childcare provider? She could do that. Do you need a prayer person? She could do that.  Do you need a scripture reader? She could do that. Do you need your pants hemmed? She could do that.  She could do most anything and she would to help most anybody.

My list of the ways she helped me over the years could go on and on (and probably should).  But in this Holy Week, I am thinking of her help in leading worship.  My first appointment was to Hemet UMC. In my first year, I was assigned to leading Palm/Passion Sunday.  Liturgically, the Sunday before Easter can go either way...focused on Palm Sunday or focused on the Passion.  I hated to choose.  I didn't want to skip Palm Sunday and I hated that people wouldn't come to Maundy Thursday or Good Friday and wanted them to have to sit with the sorrow of the Passion.  So, I did "Palm to Passion Sunday" and used the liturgy to explore the various events of that week.  The final element was to turn off the lights and hammer nails into a cross and let the sound echo in the sanctuary.  Then it was silent.

My mom was there for that service and was more than happy to help. So she hammered the nails.  The liturgy had been powerful and then the darkness, the silence, the hammering, and more silence, it really spoke to people.  And I remember how it spoke to her and how even in the busyness of orchestrating the liturgy, she was touched.  I am grateful she was always supportive of my ministry and willing to lend a hand in so many ways.

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