"Here is the church, here is the steeple, open the door and out come the people."
"Do it again, Mama!" Lauren sat at the bedside of her daughter, Jenna, having a cuddly time.
"Okay, silly, but you say it this time and I’ll do the actions."
Jenna giggled, "Here is my church, and here is its steeple, open the door and look at all the people."
"Jenna, that was very clever. You have a way with words." Mama fluffed up Jenna’s pillow and Jenna lay down. Mama then kissed her on each cheek, the nose, and her forehead.
Jenna made the church with her hands again and stared at it. "Mama, we love our church, don’t we?"
"Yes, Jenna, we do love our church. What are your people doing inside there?"
The little girl peeped inside her pretend church. "Oh, mama, I see Preacher. He’s standing up front wearing one blue sock and one black."
"He is? What’s he doing up there?"
"Oh! He’s praying for me. I went up with you and daddy to get batized."
"You did? You weren’t too scared to go to the front with all those people?"
“No, Mama. I wanna get batized."
"We’ll talk to Daddy about it tomorrow. What else do you see in your church?"
"I see the ushers holding comm... commu..."
"Its communion. You know what communion is?"
"Crackers and grape juice. It’s to remember that Jesus died for the bad stuff we do."
“What do the crackers remind us of?”
“Jesus’ body, Mama, and the juice is His blood.” Jenna scrunched up her nose and made a funny face.
"You’re right. Is Jesus still dead?"
"No way! On Easter He woked up."
"You are too smart, my dear girl."
"Mama, lookee here – a sheep pen.”
“A sheep pen in church?”
“I learnt in Sunday School that Jesus told Peter to feed His sheep.”
“That He did. Who are the sheep?”
“We are, Mama. Baaa, baaaa….”
“Nice little sheep.”
“There’s Miss Marcia. She’s up front leading songs. I like to sing to Jesus.”
“Jesus likes when you sing to Him, too.”
Jenna sat up in bed and leaned against Lauren. “How come Grams and Gramps don’t go to church, Mama?”
“Well, they used to a long time ago but when your uncle Tommy died they stopped believing in Jesus.”
“They don’t b’live in Jesus? Does that make Jesus cry?”
“I’m sure it does. It makes me cry, too, honey.”
“I don’t remember Uncle Tommy.”
“He died in a car crash before you were ever born.”
“Mama, I’m sad now, too.” Jenna wiped tears from her eyes with the back of her hand.
“Its okay to cry but we don’t have to be too sad. We’ll see Tommy again. He was a Christian.”
“We’ll see him in Heaven, right?”
“I’m not crying for Uncle Tommy. I’m crying for Grams and Gramps.”
“Make your church again, Jenna. See that box sitting on the Welcome Center?”
“I see it!”
“That’s where we put our prayer requests. Let’s write one together about Grams and Gramps, okay?”
Jenna hopped out of bed and sat at her desk. With one hand holding her pencil and the other holding her paper down, she stuck out her tongue, deep in thought.
“Jenna, um, honey, we write the prayer requests to the prayer team, not to God.”
“Never mind.” Lauren smiled while she watched Jenna painstakingly write each letter, sounding out each word as she went along.
Grams and Gramps don’t bleve in yu. Please help them bleve again.
“This okay, Mama?”
“It’s just perfect. We’ll put it in the box Sunday morning.”
“Mama, can I ask Grams and Gramps to come to church?”
“I’m sure they’ll come when you get baptized.”
Jenna jumped back up onto her bed and did a somersault, which landed her bottom side down on her once fluffy pillow. Her head was now at the foot of the bed with her legs sticking straight up in the air. She looked deep into her Mama’s eyes with a mischievous grin on her face.
“I know that look, Jenna. What are you up to?”
“I think Jesus would like to hear Gramps making a joyful noise in church lots more than in his living room. Burp…snore, snore.”
“Time for you to be snoring, too, silly goose.”
“Love you, Mama.”
“Love you too, Jenna-bug.”
As Lauren was leaving the room she heard Jenna whisper, “I love You, Jesus. Honk, honk!”
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