Going to church

Jeff Wesley

Going to church

Worship at St. Mark's Evangelical Lutheran Church in Baltimore.

I try so hard to spend time listening for God's still, small voice. My life is so noisy, though. My family -- I wouldn't trade any of them for the world! My friends -- the best and so much fun! My home -- hard to keep up with it! My hobbies -- I need more time to read, do cross stitch, knit, enjoy my music, cook, study. Correspondence -- it's email, it's Facebook, it's even a card or a note. My meetings -- Congregation Council, Worship and Music, Altar Guild, Faith Formation Team, choir rehearsal (the best!).

Even as I'm falling asleep (on a good night) and saying my prayers, there is more traffic on my street, the train is close by, sirens are frequent, loud engines, motorcycles when the weather is warm. It's hard to find time to really connect with God and have a decent conversation.

On Sundays I get my chance! A little over an hour of God language in which I hear God's still, small voice and his loud, booming voice, his words of wisdom and guidance for me, words of comfort, learning opportunities. Singing his praises can sometimes bring me to tears! I can partake of Jesus' body and blood and be reminded that he died for me. What a wonderful conversation I experience on Sunday mornings!

Now that Lent is here, I have two opportunities to go to church. My Sundays are as always, but now I have Wednesdays also. I can contemplate God's word. I can sing praises to my Lord. I can hear stories of his love, and I can share my pain, my joy, my questions, my thanks. God and I have the best times when I am in church.

As loud as it may get in church, it is never noisy, not like my life. I wouldn't miss any of that. I love my noisy life, but I need to converse with God on a regular basis. That's my church time. Make no mistake, I have a running conversation with God, but my church-time conversation with God is nourishing and comforting.

I'll be in church for as long as God allows. It's our time, and we make our own noise.


Jeff Wesley has been a member of Saint Matthew Lutheran Church, an ELCA congregation in Springfield, Pa., since 1969 and raised three sons there.

You might also want to read:
Step out of the box into a Lenten series
Lenten worship resources
A journey from death to life

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