Lately I’ve been pondering my Sunday mornings.
They are entirely routine. Start with a trip to get coffee, then to the church to set up for the first service of the day. Spend time with some awesome people warming up and joking around a bit followed by a break to say hello to folks showing up for the service. Then the service happens and we store the equipment. The service itself is largely the same every week and even the minor variations are often strikingly similar (guest speakers share at “that” point of the service and rarely any other).
The service leads to Sunday School with the youth, which is always awesome no matter the circumstances. It is, without question, the highlight of my Sunday, and sometimes my week, to watch their minds work through things and often find that they have already done the math and reached a profound conclusion.
The rest…is routine. The same, or nearly so, every week.
Routine can be good. The liturgy of the church is there to make sure we stick to our guns and don’t skip over that troublesome bit that we aren’t so sure about, really. It makes sure we remember that we need forgiveness and to give forgiveness to receive forgiveness. Stuff like that.
Except that the liturgy isn’t routine. The liturgy, in terms some will wonder what I’m talking about, is an API upon which to build. It’s a platform that can support the weight of our craziest ideas of what worship can look like.
I have found myself lately saddened at the lack of originality coming from such a lush and rich platform upon which amazing experiences and adventures can take place. That sadness is turning into ideas, though, and here are some of them so far:
Coffee on Thursday
I’m out for coffee just about every weekday visiting different shops about town. I propose, for those who are able, to name Thursday morning a time to meet up and talk. Talk about anything. This isn’t a time of singing or discussing The Word, at least not intentionally. Singing may erupt and the Bible is as much a topic of conversation as anything. But it’s a time to meet and gather around a public hearth (sort of) and be in each other’s lives such that the routine has depth and we can build upon the liturgy.
Leave the Church Sundays
On some Sundays, we still have services happening like normal (since people who visit will not have received this memo). But we also gather in a park or on a street corner and have a simple service together. Nothing huge or requiring massive amount of planning or logistics. This is something that gets us into the community instead of waiting for the community to come to us. This might be a time of singing our favorite songs while picking up trash (or just singing, even). Maybe having a small, quiet, nearly silent, monastic-style prayer service on a sidewalk in town. The liturgy is still there to guide the content, but here we have shattered the routine so that something new might take place.
That’s all for now, but I’ll post more if they come to me.