And the rain fell, and the floods and torrents came, and the winds blew and slammed against that house; yet it did not fall, because it had been founded on the rock. – Matthew 7:25
This is one of those posts that could easily hang on just the one photo. So I have to thank the Hunt family for allowing me to use this as my “feature” image with today’s writing.
Picture taken; story told.
The image fits so beautifully with this ongoing conversation we’re all having, around how our church family here in Wake Forest is responding to the challenge to stay connected during a time of required physical distancing.
Invitation to Redemption:
One thought on my mind is the opportunity this sets up for redemption. We all know that the Internet, and social media in particular, too easily degrades into an unfriendly and confrontational space. So maybe this is our great opportunity – as God’s witnesses to light and life, to mercy and grace – to change all that, to redeem the way we relate to one another in this virtual space.
People have been “coming to church” in droves over the past few weeks. Bible study groups are “packed” and worship has been extremely well attended. In a sense the Internet is being saturated with prayer, scripture, and encouragement!
We also understand that every screen that logs on to Sunday morning services represents a household. Then today I found out that at least one family pet is thoroughly engaged with the church service.
Yes, that’s right, Lucy is evidently a Presbyterian. She is not only “present” for worship, she is glued to the action. I really like this picture because it means that not only are Sarah and Charlie at church, it’s the whole family; both of their children and – yes – Lucy too.
Home is so important!
The heart of the church is the family unit that worships at home. Rebekah has said this from the pulpit many times, and this current crisis is an opportunity for the full import of this truth to register. Devotions around the dinner table (or some other time), create a spiritual center for the home. Whatever the configuration of your family – from a single person with their cat to a newly married couple, to an established unit with several children and maybe grandparents too.
Our church is strong to the extent that worship at home anchors the life our families bring with them to corporate worship and the practice of faith as a community. To know that small pockets of people, in homes all over this community, are worshiping together (in real time, along with with the rest of us) is a powerful, transformational picture of The Church.
This coming Sunday we will celebrate The Lord’s Supper in this way. It will be a powerful moment and when we come back together as a body in one building we will be stronger for it.
We will be stronger. Maybe we already are. In hope, and faith – DEREK
(These photos of the “process” – Rebekah recording a morning message, people worshipping from home, signing into a Bible study…. etc)
Derek has published seven books in the past decade (you can find them at https://www.amazon.com/Derek-Maul/e/B001JS9WC4), and there’s always something new in the works.
Before becoming a full-time writer, Derek taught public school in Florida for eighteen years, including cutting-edge work with autistic children. He holds bachelor’s degrees in psychology and education from Stetson University and the University of West Florida.
Derek is active in teaching at his church: adult Sunday school, and a men’s Bible study/spiritual formation group. He enjoys the outdoors, traveling, photography, reading, cooking, playing guitar, and golf.