“Tear On The Pulpit”
The camaraderie of saints filled the room as the bell in the tower sweetly sounded it’s calling the small community to worship. God’s banquet was prepared for His people. Music played softly as ushers gathered those within the foyer and encouraged people to enter into the sanctuary.
The verbal blessing poured forth from one to another as “How do you do’s” were exchanged. The early morning sunshine was breaking in thru the windows and everything seemed in perfect order as the preacher approached the old solid oak pulpit. His black wingtips squeaked slightly as he turned and faced the congregation. He reached down into a cubby and took a sip of cold water before saying, “Good morning.”
The music came to an abrupt stop, and the voices settled down to complete silence as pastor Tom adjusted his loose fitting glasses. He glanced across the room from the right side to the left, and he seemed distracted a bit as he readjusted his glasses once again.
“I have some good news, and some bad news. The campaign for the needy single parents has far exceeded our expectations, and we now have a surplus of gift certificates that will be awarded to the pregnancy center. I know this is ironic, but the need at the pregnancy center is greater this year than in previous ones. So why are their more pregnancies than the needs of single parents? Sadly, because there are more abortions so that singles can remain free to be single.”
The congregation was silent.
“I had a sermon, as always, prepared for today, but in light of what happened to me this morning on the way to church, I am feeling lead to ask us to join hands and pray.”
This was most unusual for this small country church. They had prided themselves to be an inherently conservatively traditional body of believers.
The faces of the saints that were the “pillars” of this church could not be mistaken. There was obvious disapproval. The pastor was already on shaky ground for changing the format over the last few months “to be more in sync” in his words, with the times. His wife however gave him a reassuring nod from her place in the front row.
“I am moved by the Spirit to spend our time this morning in prayer and fasting.”
He began his prayer by the clearing of his throat. “Dear Lord, it is with great expectation that we come to You this morning. The hitchhiker that I picked up this morning seems to me of more importance than our own comfort zone. My heartbreaks, and my words are weak, because she was running away from home, a home that she loves. Out of respect for her father’s reputation in the community she was willing to run off, and be alone… a castaway of society. God, please bring her to Your grace and mercy, for Your mercies are new every morning. She is pregnant, and she is willing to keep her baby. Help her, Lord. We give You this situation, and we ask this in Jesus name.”
“I would like us to stay in an attitude of prayer this morning, and I would also like to skip the ritual of food and beverages during our fellowship after today’s service.”
With that comment a single tear fell from his cheek, and a quivering lip was seen as he wiped the tear from the pulpit with his sleeve, and pushed his glasses back to rest properly on his nose. He sat down next to his wife and sang a closing song with the choir.
Some people stayed, but many walked out disgusted with all the new fangled changes to the service. Grumbling could be overheard as many left the building. In pastor Tom’s mind he could hear the people shouting… Crucify him… crucify him… crucify him!
He held tightly to his wife’s hand as they silently prayed for a time together. He started to cry more compassionately as only the Lord overheard his prayers.
Forgive her Lord; please forgive our daughter.
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