about writing and life and God

Flexible fun – and worship

on July 1, 2013

“Blessed are the flexible… for they will not be bent out of shape!”

I was grateful for the willing flexibility of our congregation at Halesworth URC on Sunday morning. They have cheerfully accepted the removal of the pews and their replacement by comfortable chairs. Yesterday they arrived at church to find not serried rows of chairs as expected but groups of  six chairs set round tables in such a way that all were facing front. And on each table was a basket of crayons, scissors and gluestick, and a tambourine or other noise-maker.

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Every table.

No one jibbed. And no one complained. (I’ve checked!)

I was leading an all-age service and was delighted to discover all ages joining in the activities – colouring in, cutting out, and so on. My theme was the fruits of the Spirit and we ended up with two displays: one showing the bad fruits of the flesh (represented by a wormy apple. I invited them to make it as horrid as could be!)

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The other by juicy grapes on a grapevine.

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I’d planned that the labels would be coloured in, cut out and glued on to the fruit but we didn’t have enough time. I had far too much material and had to do an on-the-hoof cut and paste, leaving out one hymn, and moving swiftly to the punchline!

What I noticed was that, because of the table layout, people sat with people they usually didn’t sit with. And they chatted and worked together as teams. (I started off with two quizzes: with prizes!) Nearly every face had a smile on it and there was a lot of helping one another.

It wasn’t traditional worship. Neither was it anything new. And without a willing co-operative congregation, it wouldn’t have worked. But it was worship and fellowship.

Yes, I was shattered when I got home, but here on Monday afternoon I’m looking back with love. And a smile. If you want a smile and a reminder about the fruits of the Spirit try and do sing along!!!


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