At some point in my life (not soon, I imagine) my time in this world will be over and I will head home to be with my heavenly father. I have frequently imagined (start humming MercyMe here) what this might be like - knowing that my limited mortal brain cannot begin to conceive of its glory (but I’m sure chocolate is involved). All my mental pictures were recently replaced by a less pleasant scenario…
Yes, yes. I’m the parent who was out SHOPPING while my 12-year-old son sat in the front row as a shining example for Pastor Stokes as the future of the church. As I wrestled past the mortification (the horror, oh the horror) right through justification (I tithe, I serve, I’m there every Wednesday, do I really have to be at all 3 weekend services?) take a pit stop at guilt (what kind of message am I sending the kids, they’re here for all 3 weekend services, what a horrible model for them, I should be doing more) I was finally able to appreciate the humor.
My friend Tracey Dowdey (who is a pastor’s wife and has surely heard it all) said it was truly one of her favorite church moments of all time. Tracey’s words often make me feel all warm inside, but I'm afraid the flush of heat I feel is from the pits of hell this time.
Or perhaps those flames warming me from below are from the parent-sin-pride from hearing Pastor Stokes say such lovely things about my youngest angel and his heart for the Lord (yeah, yeah - if I hadn't been out shopping, I could have heard it all first hand instead of having several of my brothers and sisters in Christ call me after that service to tell me all about it and send me links to the webcast so I can watch it over and over again).
Thank God I’m saved, ‘cause I’m sure not perfect!