A couple of days ago, I had the privilege of driving into the city to pick up our dear friends, Rich & Cheryl Buhre from the airport. Lee wasn't able to go and he didn't want me to drive alone. So, a new friend, Adele was kind enough to go with me. It was such a treat to spend some one-on-one time together. As we were returning from the city with the new arrivals, we had an interesting conversation about church. Adele commented "I don't like the phrase - doing church - what does that mean? We are the church, we don't do church?" (You will have to imagine hearing her lovely South African accent) As we drove and talked, we covered many topics, but that one stuck in my mind.
Church is definitely one of the things we miss most about being in the USA. We long for fellowship and community worship in our heart language. We miss the kind of teaching that challenges, chastens, encourages, spurs, exhorts, convicts and changes us. Our kids miss their teachers and friends from their Sunday morning classes. We have been worried about what church will look like for our family here in Panajachel. We pray and wait - knowing the Lord is faithful.
Before the end of our drive back to Pana, we all decided that maybe we could come together for an informal worship gathering on Sunday morning. So our three families met in a small, but cozy and intimate room. Adele played her guitar and we sang worship songs together. We watched a down-loaded sermon. Nothing fancy, but let me just say this - the Lord inhabits the praise of his people. He came and met with us. What a sweet time of fellowship, teaching, worship and prayer. Once again, the Lord has provided for us in a way that we could not imagine or ask for. He is so faithful to us, in spite of our unfaithfulness to Him. We are the church, we are the body - created in His image for his glory and his renown. What does church mean for you?