Yesterday as Kay & I talked about the evening’s home group gathering, Kay bemoaned the fact that it has been some time since we actually planned a meeting ahead of time — “We aren’t really leading.” I told her what Todd Hunter wrote, that leadership, like any other spiritual gift, comes and goes according to its season. If it is not your season, relax. If you don’t have a vision, don’t try to create one from thin air.
We were so unprepared that we were actually still eating supper when people began to show up. We began to share our stories of the past week. After some sharing and discussion, it felt like we should spend some time in worship. I got out my guitar but said, “I don’t have anything prepared.” So we sat for awhile until a song came to my mind, which we sang together. Then Kay suggested another song. This moved into silence and prayer.
In the course of the silence, a thought came to me which I shared with the group: “The Jewish festivals served as regular reminders of God’s faithfulness in the past. Kay & I have heard teaching before about ‘Jordan Stones’. When God stopped the river Jordan so the Israelites could cross on dry ground, God told them to take some stones from the middle to remind them of the event. I think God wants us each to remember some specific thing he’s done in the past, and hold onto that as a reminder of his faithfulness so we can face the future. Jesus said, ‘Do this in remembrance of me.'”
One person then began to read from Joshua. Kay read the account of the crossing and the stones. Suddenly Kay got up, went outside, and came back in with several round rocks. “These are actually called ‘river rocks’. Sorry they’re dirty. If we had planned this, I would have washed them. But maybe dirt is part of it.” She distributed the rocks, and we sat in silence meditating on them. (That’s my rock in the picture.) After a while, we closed in prayer.
Later as Kay & I got ready for bed, I told her, “I believe in planning, I really do. But we don’t have anything to give, and God seems to be leading the group just fine. Maybe he’s doing this so we don’t have to plan meetings as an extra burden during our time of stress.”