Friday, April 14, 2006
Yup. I sat at Grace church for 3 hours today. We had a guest preacher... a Bishop from Boston named Steven Charleston who was leading the meditations on Christ's last words. This was new to me, since last year at S. Stephen's we did the stations of the cross. And I have to say, this guy was fantastic. He is, apparently, a former Baptist and his preaching was definately evangelical. At one point he even joked about an Episcopal Bishop making an altar call and I tell you right now, I was ready to stand up and be amoung those coming forward.
And yes, I cried for about 3 hours straight.
Here's the thing. It wasn't his preaching that brought me to tears. No. It wasn't the hymns or the beautiful choir or the collects. No.
It was the fact that I know, deep in my soul, deep in my core, I know that I am saved. And the miracle of that is just beyond comprehension. I know, brothers and sisters, that I who was dead, am alive. I who was in grief and despair, am in joy. I know that NOTHING can ever change that. My tears then, aren't just from grief, but joy. My tears are of gratitude. Humilty. Awe.
I was deeply appreciative that the lady sitting behind me had a wad of tissues to share.
Then, at the end of the service, after the last hymn, we all stood (or knelt) in silence as the church bells tolled.
100 people, in silence.