Thursday, April 13, 2006

Via Dolorosa

being an usher in church makes it very hard to be holy on sunday mornings.

ushers are given instructions to lead the congregation members to sit in the right places, like filling up the front rows first. i never understand why this is such a difficult task to do. early birds like to sit in the back rows. some like to sit near te exits. a few like the reserved seats best. basically, people sit everywhere and anywhere they want, except where they are supposed to. days like that, i wish i had a whip to gently persuade my dear brothers and sisters in christ to do the right thing.

i have only tried to influence an insignificant action, and already find it extraordinarily hard. can we imagine how difficult it is to be God, and to have patience with a perverse and wilful people? and to care not only about the actions but also the heart. one might as well try to control the direction of sand slipping through your fingers.

the hardest part is not trying to control people. it's guiding people with gentleness. if God tames us with whips and blasts of lightning, i should think that obedience wouldn't be very much of a problem. yet, to quote CS Lewis, he does not coerce, he only woos. and the stripes of the whip are on His own back. it is good friday tomorrow. it is time to remember that we are the ones responsible for the broken body on the cross, because of God's love for an undeserving people. that is truly,

Amazing grace.

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