Last Sunday was part of a special day for Paul and his housemates as they formally joined the membership of St. Paul’s UCC in Marthasville
. I was fortunate to be with them and share in their experience. At the beginning of the service, the men were presented as new members of the congregation. They all paid close attention to the ceremony and responded and listened as directed by the Pastor.
Near the end of the service, the Pastor led the congregation in the prayers of the people where joys and concerns from the congregation were heard to be part of the prayer. The Pastor had just asked the congregation for their prayer requests, and up shot Paul’s hand as he sat on the front row of the sanctuary. The Pastor called on Paul and he immediately shared two simple requests:
Paul said he wanted to “Thank God and the congregation for letting him become a member of their church.”
Paul then said he wanted to “Ask God to help him do good work to support his church.”
The Pastor looked at Paul in amazement and said “WOW!“
Paul, in a very brave and thoughtful way, showed those in the room what this special opportunity meant to him. He said what he believed and it was just right for all the rest of us to hear and learn from Paul’s prayer.
I had several people ask me to repeat what Paul had said as I visited with others during the Fellowship Hour following church. They commented that they were so impressed by what he said that they wanted to make sure they had a clear memory of Paul’s words. They knew I worked with Paul and was sitting near him when he spoke so I had a better chance to clearly hear his prayer.
I’m sharing this with all of you because of how special the moment was for me and the church. In light of the tough times that sometimes dominate the daily reports and conversation concerning those we work with and serve, this was a VERY special moment. It’s often difficult to properly share the positives and this day was one of those times I just couldn’t let it go without letting everyone know about Paul’s “WOW” moment. His faith, heart and mind truly inspired others!