We had another great weekend! There are lots of things that I was stoked about. Here are a few:
• INVITE TEMP – I think it’s caliente right now. Like last week, it was fun to bump into lots of people’s guests & to see people standing in front with that scanning the horizon look squinting to find the friend they invited (that’s always a moving sight to me btw). The capstone happened today when I was surfing a guy paddled over to me & said, “That was a great service yesterday. I visited journey this weekend.”
• COMMUNION – Rod had, what appeared to me, a strong leading that we should have communion this weekend. It’s a little counter intuitive to do in the midst of one of our most seeker intensive series. He had read something from fellowship church in Dallas, & talked about how it “proclaims the Lord’s death until he comes”. Jason did a fantastic job leading it. I went along, but wasn’t crazy about the idea. I was wrong! Another benefit of “team”!
• WATCHING COMMUNION – in the 10:30 service (soon to be the 10:45 service) I sat about ¾ of the way back & took it all in as people went to the various stations. Unlike the other services, they didn’t have to be prompted or permitted to go, they bolted for the tables as soon as the worship started. I couldn’t help but choke up seeing people streaming to commune, to eucharite (to give thanks in Greek), remember & worship. I knew the stories of lots of them – people going through loss, people saved from a pointless existence, people forgiven great sins, people greatly blessed, couples, groups of friends. I was also struck by our diversity at Journey. It’s not all that I’d like, but the ethnic, generational & socio-economic diversity was marvelous.
• DECIDING TO BECOME CHRIST FOLLOWERS – we always have an opportunity to do this in our services. It’s a little prayer thing at the end & I have them raise their hands. I don’t know what is in their heads obviously, but it’s important to give people some space for that. This weekend, every service there was an unusual number of them. Is this tied into communion?
• LOTS-O-PEEPS – Usually, Memorial weekend is lightly attended but, especially at 10:30, fue lleno!
SOME ADDITIONAL THOUGHTS ON THE MOVIE & THE MESSAGE
I had a serious & somewhat heavy sense that the theme, the Word that I believed was from God, “Disappointment with Life” was touching a nerve of lots of us. I also felt like God was giving us the honesty to admit that we are disappointed which is when the healing & perspective changing begins to happen.
A couple of people asked for clarification on the “Holding on for a Blessing” point & quitting too soon. I can think of 3 common ways we tend to stop wrestling & quit too soon (thus the wound just stays as an evil presence in our lives):
1. Christian schmaltz – this is the spiritual version of “when life gives you lemons, make lemonade”. Evil & disappointment needs to be named & confessed, not called what its not. “The sacrifices of God are a broken spirit; a broken & contrite heart He will not despise”.
2. Cluelessness – This is when we are simply not paying enough attention to what’s going on in our lives. We wonder where some of these reactions & reflexive responses that are so troublesome come from. I’m beginning to think that the essence of maturity, spiritual & otherwise, is SELF AWARENESS.
3. Clutter – we clutter our life with so much diversion & so much business that we never get around to some of the wrestling that has to happen. This helps keep the sense of “disappointment with life” in the background. Of course, it keeps popping up when we don’t expect it & in unwelcome moments.
I’m thankful that God lavishes grace on us, even when we feel disappointed with life.