15 Aug Company is Coming!
Company’s coming! These two words have the power to spur me to action like almost nothing else can do.
This past weekend, a group of friends gathered around my dining room table to celebrate two birthdays. These are friends I have known for the better part of twenty years. They have seen me at my best and they have seen me at my worst. They have prayed and comforted me through numerous difficulties and they have celebrated my many joys. They are, in a very real sense, part of my extended family.
These friends absolutely do not care whether my kitchen floor has been swept or the furniture dusted when they arrive. They do not look to see if the grass has been mowed or if the garbage was taken out. That is not what is important when we gather. What is important is that we spend time together so that we can share our lives, catch up on one another’s news, eat and laugh and celebrate together.
I know this truth and I affirm it. But I still washed all the dishes in the sink before they arrived. I also took out the trash, cleaned off the coffee table, and hung up my clothes from earlier in the day. I prepared the house so that it was welcoming, so they’d have a place to sit down without having to move something out of the way. I stocked the refrigerator with juice and sodas, and I made dessert. None of these things were expected of me, and my friends would not have loved me less had I failed to do them. But preparing for my extended family’s visit was a way I could honor and care for them. It was a tangible way to acknowledge that they matter to me, that I am grateful to be part of their lives and to share their birthdays, that I enjoy and cherish the time we spend in one another’s company.
In about a month, on Sunday, September 23 to be precise, Calvary will throw open its doors for a big party. Our worship that morning will be a grand celebration of God’s presence and work in our midst. Of course, that is true for our worship every week, but we have a special “excuse” for this particular celebration. We will be dedicating the hybrid pipe organ that has been installed in our sanctuary. This dedicatory service will include special music and guest musicians, recognition of the many people, including the architect and contractors, whose vision and expertise made the organ project possible, and it will be followed by a celebratory luncheon. Guests are already “RSVPing” and it is getting exciting.
Which means…..company’s coming! During the next month we will be giving Calvary the “white glove” once-over. Sprucing up the yard, cleaning the sanctuary, clearing out the clutter, hauling away the trash, all in preparation for September 23. Some might wonder, “why bother?” It won’t make a difference in how the organ sounds or in how glad people are to see one another. That’s true. But, we will be worshiping with a number of guests that day. We will be celebrating Arlington Presbyterian’s gift of this wonderful organ to our church. We will be acknowledging the legacy of faith that has been passed to us, and which we now endeavor to pass to the next generation. Most importantly, we will worship as a community. Make no mistake. God is the focus of our dedication service, not the organ. God is the one we will honor and praise. God is the reason we want to “put our best foot forward” as we welcome guests in to our midst. We are preparing God’s house for this special day, as we recognize and celebrate God’s gifts, God’s graces, God’s action and presence among us.
If you are part of the Calvary family, I ask you to roll up your sleeves and help us get ready. There will be a church work day on Saturday, September 15, with projects both inside and out. A list will be published soon. I also encourage you to bring a friend, family member or neighbor to the organ dedication service. A special flyer is attached that can be printed or downloaded and forwarded to those you wish to invite, or you may forward the webpage for this event as well.
If you live locally, we invite you to come and share this special day with us. Come see—and hear!!—how God is at work changing lives as we continue our journey of faith together, a journey that will now be accompanied by the deep, rich resonance of organ pipes. We look forward to seeing you!
Yours for the Kingdom,