I love Sundays.
I don’t love Sunday afternoons.
Most of the time I blame technology. But that’s really just a lame excuse. Email, text-messaging, Twitter, Facebook, Instagram only reveal my deeply entrenched pride and desire to feel successful.
The onslaught of the voices from the web beckon me to believe that everyone else has somehow had a Sunday that I rarely experience. On the web, I find rhythmic quotations, grandiose adjectives, and 140-character descriptions of a Sunday that was mind-blowing and beyond compare. And to top it all off, there is the reminder that next Sunday is sure to be even more astounding.
My temptation is to believe that I am missing out. My Sundays often seem normal. Each and every Sunday when I gather with the church the following things are sure to happen:
- I will pray prayers that affirm the profound otherness and yet intimate nearness of my Father.
- I will sit under the truth of the Scriptures and have them deepen my thoughts, broaden my understanding, and heighten my affections for Christ.
- I will be reminded of the beauty of the gospel and convinced of my ever-growing need for it.
- I will lift my voice with my brothers and sisters in singing robust and profound gospel truths led by men and women that love Jesus.
- I will see the good news enacted as we partake of communion and longingly await the day when we will gather at the true Feast.
- I will be enveloped in biblical community through genuine burden-bearing love with my closest friends.
- I will intercede on behalf of the unreached and the missionaries and church planters laboring to see the fame of God spread among the nations.
- I will join with others in repenting of the propensity of my heart to waywardness and join them in being welcomed by a God full of grace and mercy.
- I will meet those wounded and wayward in need of the life transforming hope of the gospel and long for the day when they will love God also.
- I will be one day closer to a new heaven and new earth in which righteousness dwells and sin will be no more.
That’s what every Sunday looks like for me. And it all seems so normal.
Somehow I get lulled to sleep with the normal and forget that none of those things are really normal after all. Actually, they represent a weekly reminder of the awe-inspiring goodness and generosity of God to a feeble, young pastor. Thankfully there are days like today when God reminds me that the “normal” means of grace he’s provided are sufficient to make every Sunday exceptional.