The past several weeks have been interesting to observe from my role as a pastor. I was not sure how people would respond to returning to in-person worship with the request to continue wearing masks. I wondered if I would spend most of Sunday morning reminding people to put their masks on. Truthfully, I was not sure how people would respond to returning to in-person at all. I wondered if some people had simply become comfortable not wearing pants with a belt to worship. I wondered if some people liked the extra sleep they received by not having to get ready for worship on Sunday morning. I know a few people are still waiting for the coffee bar to be constructed in the sanctuary to help them stay awake during the sermon. These were but a few of my myriad thoughts as we began reconnecting in worship and Sunday School.
The first Sunday we gathered in the sanctuary, however, was something that I did not anticipate. I have admitted before that I am not a person who cries a great deal, but that first Sunday when the first notes of Come Thou Almighty King were played, my allergies acted up a little. It was not the hymn choice, that hymn does not have some sort of deep meaning in my life. It was hearing voices fill the sanctuary as we sang together. It was knowing that there were other voices at home singing. It was realizing that there would be voices who might sing this same song later in the week. Then when we did the corporate reading of Scripture all I thought to myself was, "Nothing more needs to be said. The refrain, God's Love Endures Forever, is simply enough." For those of you who were there for that first Sunday return whether in-person or online, thank you for participating in that time of worship. As we continue the process of reconnection, may God continue to guide our paths.