Service Planning. We have been service planning. We're planning two services this week. There will be music and talking, a message, family business.
I even said at one point "how long do you want the service to be?"
Sounds very familiar.
But this is a very strange experience.
This is our service planning team.
We are planning a graveside service (10am) and a memorial service (2pm) Saturday.
I think we finalized Dad's graveside and memorial services today. I'm very pleased with the breadth of what will be represented. It will fully communicate my dad.
I'm struggling with the length of the service... but I'm leaving my watch at home. :-)
Last night my brother Alan and I spent a couple of hours watching videos of my dad playing the organ and piano. This was hard and wonderful. He was a fine musician. An even better one since I moved away 25 years ago. He practiced nearly every day. As I listened to him introduce pieces I realized how much of an impact he has had on my philosophy of worship... that excellence and preparation honor God, that we are instruments created by God to bring Him glory and that we were created to praise God. I also discovered that I am a production snob. A nicer way to say that is that I am very grateful for the gear and our team. Randy Rock and I love to watch church video... I cannot wait to pop some popcorn and watch these together.
Church. I love the Church. I do "church" for a living. I am fascinated as I listen to people talk about church. What makes a church? Who gets to lead? How people are hurt or disappointed by the church. How the church isn't what God intended. The longing for church, pastoral care and a community of faith but the pain of disappointment. How hard it is to find a church where you respect the pastor and like the musical style. Every conversation I have overheard could be said about my church. Yet, it makes me long for my community of faith, for my ministry team. And, I am reminded... the impact of Brian McLaren's Arts Conference talk... the list of things wrong with our church vs. being agents of transformation in a world that is far from God.
Friends. Yesterday I had to talk a few of my dearest friends out of flying from Portland for the services Saturday. When they offered, I cried. I loved the idea of them being here. But over the past couple of days I realize that I need to fully be present with my family Friday and Saturday and if they were here... I would be divided. This was hard because the gift of their presence would be amazingly wonderful. But somehow knowing they would come is enough.