Tonight…

Tonight, my brother and sister-in-law prepare for worship in the morning.  Tomorrow will be a great day for them as their daughter will be baptized.  Tonight is a night filled with joy.

Tonight, a family with whom I have been friends since childhood prepare for worship in the morning.  Tomorrow will be a sad day for them as this will be the first time they go to worship after their mother passed away.  Tonight is a night filled with sorrow.

Tonight, a family that has encouraged many in our home church prepares for worship in the morning.  Only, they may not be present with the congregation since they will be surrounding the man who is husband, father, grandfather, and friend to so many.  They surround him and wait with him in hospice care.  Tonight is a night filled with unease, unknowing, and waiting.

Tonight, I heard a man share his story of God working in his life this summer.  He should be dead.  He had a pulmonary embolism.  He had renal failure.  He was septic.  His heart began to fill with fluid and almost strangled him from within.  Yet he lives.  Tonight, he was weak.  He could not stand so he shared his story from a chair.  But as he ended his talk, he said he wanted to pray for the family at Freedom Fellowship.  This man who was so weak he could not stand and was running out of breath from talking STOOD UP and prayed a blessing over the church.

Tonight, as I prepare for worship I am reminded that we all have a story to tell.  When we show up to worship tomorrow, wherever that may be, we will be coming from many different places.

Tonight is a night for preparation.  Tomorrow will have many different expressions.  Tonight is a night filled with many different emotions.

Yet we will all worship the same God.

Psalm 103:1-5

Bless the LORD, O my soul,
and all that is within me,
bless his holy name.
Bless the LORD, O my soul,
and do not forget all his benefits—
 who forgives all your iniquity,
who heals all your diseases,
 who redeems your life from the Pit,
who crowns you with steadfast love and mercy,
 who satisfies you with good as long as you live
so that your youth is renewed like the eagle’s.

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