Worshipping with New Church (Day 2)

Worship has become my comfort zone throughout my time at Wesley. Before I got to college, I attended a traditional service and didn’t have much experience planning regular worship, especially contemporary or alternative worship. But at school, I have had the opportunity to discover a passion for worship planning, experience, and aesthetics. I love paying attention to details no one ever notices unless they aren’t right- like if the candles are lit, or if the visuals are appropriate. But sometimes, I think that I get so caught up in those details during services that I plan and lead that I forget to actually worship. I spend all my time anticipating and solving problems before they occur and solving any issues that arise.

This morning we worshiped with New Church UMC in Atlanta. They were incredibly gracious to host us overnight and opened their doors to about 40 of their closest new friends to crash on their floor, hijack their kitchen, and fill up their parking lot. We joined them in worship and Singers had the chance to sing several songs during the service. Today was the start of lent, so as per church tradition, the start of a new sermon series. When we got to the church on Saturday afternoon, we were greeted by piles of old lawnmowers, grates, spray painted wood, and black plastic. These were all going to be included in the worship space for the beginning of lent. throughout the next several weeks, artists in the community are going to be turning all this supposed trash into life filled art. They are going to make flowers out of the recycled metal and put them out on the lawn of the church for anyone to take and place in their own yard. The materials in the sanctuary are going to be transformed with water and plants into a beautiful life bearing demonstration of renewal of broken and worthless things.

Aren’t we all in some sort of renewal state? Stuck somewhere between broken and worthless and a beautiful reflection of the world around us? God is working in and through us this week and every week to transform the world from broken to beautiful. I am excited to see all the ways that our community is willing to let God work through them, in them, and in spite of them to share love with everyone we meet this week. When I get stressed about having to go with the flow, when the details aren’t under my control and not everything goes according to plan, I know that those are the cracks in me where I can shine God’s love through my passion for worship and into my community and the communities we are working with this week. God is working to renew my and use my mind and spirit to renew those around me, so that we can all be better reflections of God’s beauty in the world.

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