Bring something to God

Published 9:45 am Monday, April 24, 2017

by Sam Askew

During the summer at Partridge Community Church the choir takes a sabbatical. Every May there is a choir dinner held during which the name of each choir member is place into a bowl. As the first name is drawn that person is responsible for something to take place during the regular choir moment in worship. The second name is drawn for the second Sunday of June and it continues until each Sunday through Labor Day weekend is assigned. The choir member may choose to do something themselves or arrange for someone else to provide for that moment in the worship service.

Linda, a published Kansan poet, would use the moment to read a few poems she had composed. Someone would quickly call dibs on “Jr.” who had grown up singing in the church choir. Although in his 90’s, he faithfully would make the early morning three hour drive with his wife one Sunday each summer to sing two solos in the church where he and his wife were married. Chris would gather a women’s quartet naming themselves the “Shy Sisters” and her husband, often the lone tenor, would gather the men and the “Back Door Boys” would sing.

Rex wondered if he could have his sons play their music on his assigned Sunday. Alex and Eric played self-composed heavy metal music. They were shy high school-aged boys who rarely spoke to anyone but attended church each week with their parents. They were excited to perform. Their music offering of the loud, heavy beat of drums and the quick and full sound of the guitar with sliding notes and chords was memorable. The sound was positively deafening at times. And when they finished the congregation applauded.

For the years these boys were in high school and into college they were invited once each summer to provide the special music for worship. They were not insulted knowing some members had brought eardrum protectors.

As pastor I was never more proud in hearing their response to the question, “Where did you get your first gig?”

Alex, being interviewed by the Hutchinson News for his many local performances and Eric, the well known drummer of the college sports half-time performances being interviewed on the local television morning show, both proudly stated their first public performance of their metallic music was in their church with the support and encouragement of their pastor.

Each summertime contribution was an offering that represented a personal connection between the individual and the God who loves them.

There was no one appointed to censor the offering prior to it being shared. The poem, song, or instrumental music may not have in itself held any meaning to the listener. What was important was our service of worship was about being the family of God. The service was the weekly gathering of the family members during which they would bring and share something of themselves for the glory of God and the joy of being able to contribute in a meaningful way to maintaining the ties of faith and family.

Many people are looking to be entertained even in the house of the Lord. The blessing of worship is in the giving. Will you be at the family gathering this Sunday?

SAM ASKEW is the pastor of Windsor Congregational Christian Church. He can be contacted at 242-4794.