The human body has many parts, but the many parts make up one whole body. So it is with the body of Christ. Some of us are Jews, some are Gentiles, some are slaves, and some are free. But we have all been baptized into one body by one Spirit, and we all share the same Spirit. 1 Corinthians 12:12-13
That was a busy weekend! Two dinner parties here at Maul-Hall, and an incredibly full Sunday at WFPC. This post is going to feature a lot of interesting photographs – from the kitchen and the church, the home-made pasta and the bread of life, food for the body and nourishment for the soul, the foodie and the disciple.
I have to begin with a profoundly beautiful moment. Typically, baptisms here seem to happen at 11:15 worship (I think 9:00 presents too much of a challenge for many parents!). But yesterday the contemporary worship crowd got to enjoy not just one, but four, as first a mother and then three children received the sacrament, and both parents joined the church.
Two of the children were old enough to understand the significance of their baptism, and the floor was covered in a crowd of small children who gathered to witness – and to experience – the extremely liberal amount of water Rebekah tends to use. In fact, when compared to the typical Presbyterian sprinkling (or misting) Rebekah’s have often been described as “a near drowning.”
EMOTION: Regardless of the amount of water involved, baptism always brings emotions close to the surface. And yesterday, especially considering Rebekah’s powerful message on the work of the Holy Spirit in the church, I believe I sensed the stirrings of a mighty wind, and I know beyond a doubt that God is alive and at work in this place.
Later, at traditional worship, another young family joined Wake Forest Presbyterian Church; and I was reminded that – despite our struggles, our inveterate stumbling, our shortcomings, and our fear of change – God has wonderfully creative, challenging, and as-yet-unimagined plans for this congregation’s future as a Jesus-centered faith community.
There is such genuine life in this place, and we can’t help but feel richly blessed.
FOODIE STUFF: Part two of this post comprises a few photos to go with our dinner-parties. Friday involved good friends and my best home-made pasta to date, then Sunday evening Rebekah and I hosted our summer edition of the Koinonia dinner groups from church.
I was pleased with both meals, but it was the stuffed salmon in filo dough that proved the real challenge. It’s been a couple of years since I last worked with filo, and evidently I had forgotten how hard it is to handle!
5:00 found me with the work surface covered in melted butter and torn dough, and guests scheduled to arrive in one hour. I’ll admit it wasn’t pretty, but filo turns out to be forgiving in the oven and the meal came out looking as good as I’d ambitiously imagined when planning the menu!
And that turns out to be my spiritual insight for the day. God’s grace is a lot like filo dough in the oven. I – we – can make a real mess of things along the way, forgetting key elements of the rules or the directions, making mistakes and getting the ingredients out of balance; but in the end it’s our trust in Jesus that counts, our faith in God that gets us through; in the final analysis we present nicely, and we find ourselves seated at the banquet table with the other guests.
Peace, and lots and lots of grace – DEREK
(Don’t miss the picture gallery – 18-images: first, the food; then, the baptism)