Monday, December 04, 2006

I really am working on goodies

edit - charles just got his results on his procedure. they found no problems at all. now he starts with adjusting various medications to try and see if they are causing the problem. most likely culprit is the blood pressure medicine he is on. this is a rare side effect of this medicine but the time frame works for this to have been a trigger. (or maybe the fact that we are about to be parents of a licensed teenage driver.) (or could it be as a co-worker of mine puts it "he really just needs a wifectomy. ") so we received good news and continue to be frustrated by the unexplained symptoms.

I really am working on MaggieGrace goodies. It is Christmas and we are in full seasonal swing at our house. I cannot post photos right now because the items I am working on are all going to blog readers. So it looks as if there is nothing to share.

I am also in the midst of the youth Christmas program at our church. Jones Chapel UMC has to be one of the most wonderful church families on earth. I was talking to a friend yesterday who goes to church with us. She and her husband recently moved back and were looking for a church. The secretary at the middle school and several of the kids at the school suggested that they visit us. Nancy's description to me was "Jones Chapel is the kind of place that just envelopes you with love." There was a lady in the nursery with us who grew up in this church - she has a totally different perspective. Her description "Jones Chapel grew me and nurtured me at every phase of my life." I love being part of a congregation with a relationship with God and each other.

Back to the program. Teenagers. Songs. Backdrops. Telling the story again. It is a challenge every year to come up with a new program that will stimulate their best performance and lead everyone in attendance into worship. It has to challenge the kids enough for them to work and have the satisfaction of accomplishment. It has to be entertaining enough to keep their attention. And it has to have all the elements of the worship for the season.

We start in September working on this. I bring several ideas to the meeting and we listen and discuss. These are bright kids and many have grown up with me as their choir director. I trust their input and this year we chose a cantata style presentation with lots of catchy praise and worship music, a beautiful message, and just the right amount of the other elements we needed.

Now, months later, we have the songs pretty well under way (all but one) and we started one of the necessary evils last night. Backdrops. Crawl around on the floor and paint. This year is a little different. Instead of scenes, we are doing a single textured paint backdrop with a cross that will be lit from behind. I will be at the church evey night for the next week adding paint to this process. This is a massive undertaking even in this simplest form. I have help from the kids and some parents - but the planning and organizing are all up to me.

I will post some photos of the process as we complete it. I hope to hang these by the weekend this week and be done with this part. I am overwhelmed again at the undertaking of the whole program, but I have already been reminded by several people that this will all be alright.

I do know that on program night, when the lights are lowered and the music starts, I find myself worshipping with the audience every year without even realizing that the audience is there. It is always as if God sends the mesaage just to me again. Yes, I am still the director and still in charge of the immediate surroundings, but God always reminds me that I am only the worker here and in the big picture, He truly is the one in charge.

I love to share that night with my family and friends. Many of the people who know me don't know that side of me at all. My work with these kids is so important to me. And as they grow and go away into the world, I hope and pray that I have expressed God's love and mine to them. I hope I have helped them to learn things they can take with them. I pray that they will continue to seek God's presence in their life. I pray for blessings to fall on them.

If you want to be blessed by a youthful worship experience, join us. Sunday Decemebr 17 at 6pm. For those who cannot be there, we wish you a joyful holiday season. We pray for God's grace to be fully present in your life.

Today, simply, I pray for you.

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