Women and Their Church To the Glory of Our Lord

I rushed into church late on Sunday morning, off the heels of leaving my husband at home with our sons to treat their heads for lice. I almost stayed home but my heart was being pulled by a string towards the people who I desperately needed to be with. Working my way across the sanctuary through a crowd of worshiping parishioners, I found my two friends who were standing and singing, swaying with their children at their feet and on their hips, greeting my frantic spirit with smiles and knowing hugs. We sat there with our brood that chirped and giggled during prayers and silence, and we corrected and patted their heads, passing crayons and coloring books and a love that bound us thick together as sisters. Our husbands were off fulfilling other duties to the church, to our families, or to themselves, but their absence was almost our power. Our minds and our bodies stretched out and up to the Lord and his glory filled our lips with praise and love for one another. And we sat there. We recited the liturgy.Β  Confessed our sins. Passed the plates. Prayed for our weak and dying world. And kept our children relatively quiet. When it was time for the sacrament of the Lord’s supper, I stood and took up the cup and the bread to feed our congregation with the love of Jesus. When my friends came up to my plates, them and their children, I looked them in the eyes and told them of his great mercy and love. A mercy and love that we have seen worked through our devastating miscarriages and disease diagnoses, struggles through our mental health, our crumbling marriages, our failures and rejections, our disobedient children, our strained family relationships, and arguments and disputes between us that only he can restore and reconcile. And we stood there with the body and blood of Christ between us. Women loved by God. Women who feed each other with the love of his grace. Women who stay when life is hard. When we are joyful and helpful and sacrificial and loving and laughing.Β  When life is unfair. Who hurt each other and yet still love and forgive. I looked at them with tears in all of our eyes and we prayed and we drank and we ate.Β  This is to the glory of the Lord.

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