I made an excuse not to go to the in person church service this morning because I was concerned over the potential for difficulties caused by other drivers. And while it was partly true, there was also the fact that it was cold, and I didn’t want to go out in that cold. I didn’t fully miss out as I watched the live online version. The thing is, while I got the message, I missed out on everything else.
As I write this the Jeep group that I belong to are gathering to present a check to a local police department. Money raised through a couple of fundraising efforts, in honor and memory of officer Tyler Herndon, who was killed in the line of duty just last year. They are meeting, presenting the check and then going to a local restaurant to eat and spend time together.
Where am I? Sitting right here, in my chair, with my cup of ever present coffee within reach.
What excuses do I have to offer for not being there? I didn’t participate in the original Jeep run. I don’t drive a Wrangler of Cherokee or Gladiator, my Jeep is not an iconic Jeep so I’m self conscious there. I can’t afford to go out to eat. Its still cold out there even though the sun is out nice and bright. It is warm and comfortable right here. There is no threat of me saying or doing something absolutely stupid and embarrassing, if I sit, right here.
Safe in my little box. My place in the country. My comfort zone, quiet, safe, alone.
Where if I trip over a line in the floor, or run into the door, or walk out to the car and slip in the mud, no one sees a thing. Safe. Protected. Alone.And yet, I am also kicking myself. This safe little comfort zone? Its also a prison of my own making.
In a while I’ll be seeing the photos from the gathering. I see all the people and jeeps having a grand time. They’ll be laughing and joking and getting to know each other all the better. I’ll wish yet again that I had gone. I’ll wish yet again that I had gathered up the courage and determination and gone. The excuse ‘but I know so few’ is almost laughable. If I would go, I would meet and know more people. My son, in all of his years of wisdom, tells me,”Just go talk to people”. He has that down to an art form, me…not so much. He has gone so far as to walk up himself, meet people and then come back, get me and introduce me to folks he just met. He has no idea how badly I wish I had the courage to do that.
Side note- sitting here thinking about that fear and discomfort- I am beginning to realize that a large part of that is left over from past experiences from bad relationships. Relationships long over, threat gone. Hmmm. That may just make a difference here.
So anyway, all too soon those photos and status posts and comments will appear and I’ll be disappointed in myself yet again. I’ll be sitting here, reading and looking and envious of the fun, when I could very well have been there.
I used that snow on the ground equals bad drivers excuse to not attend church service this morning. I could safely sit here and watch it online. Which I did. I didn’t take notes because I have no clue where I have left my notebook. But that’s neither here nor there.
While I did hear the message, I missed out on important parts of the service. I missed out on the camaraderie. I missed out on the emotion. I missed out on the feeling of worship among like minded and like hearted people. Hearing the word shared and the message it brings is important.
There is more that can be received from it when you are sharing in corporate worship.When people who know you, greet you. When people ask and really want to know, how you and or your family are doing. When you join voices with others in song. Not only hearing, but feeling the prayers offered up.
Sitting here in the relative comfort of my home, in my chair, with my coffee cup within reach, I denied myself a lot. Just for the sake of comfort.