Sharing Our Faith: Kelly Eplee
How does worship affect my life between Sundays?
I chose this question as a challenge and a bit of fun. It quickly took me back to my very conservative church up-bringing. I was quite sincere and committed as a young Baptist guy. We had a very active youth group doing Bible studies and singing tours.
We were admonished as youth to live all week like it was Sunday. Which meant we were to evangelize and be able represent our faith in a very verbal and doctrinal way. I was supposed to be saving people. This is tough stuff for any kid. In that juxtaposition/gulf between church life and mid-week life, many Baptist jokes are born. (I won’t torture and confuse you with examples!)
The stakes were high. I grew up in the public schools of the 60s and 70s. Pretty much the standard defense shared by my peers was “I don’t go to church, that’s where all the hypocrites meet every Sunday.” Battle lines were drawn. The times and my early brand of religion did not mix easily. I still bear some of the scars.
To bravely use a ubiquitous church word to describe what happens at Cove Presbyterian Church, I have experienced and continue to experience a sense of “Holy” here. It has little to do with doctrine or religious fervor. It is a different kind of inspiration. It’s a mundane Holiness. Quieter, gentler, still sincere and loving and Christ-like. And it’s so much more exportable. It’s easy to take it amid the bustle of the week.
We come here and sing old hymns, learn new music, share in the timeless biblical narratives and the stories that have inspired so many for so long. We share our joys and pains in this grand old intimate space. It certainly does affect my life between Sundays, because I take you with me.
I remember each of you and what you share. I can mention each of you by name, your commitment to story-telling, justice, sustainability, craftsmanship, farm living, music, onions, all God’s critters. Your commitment and generosity to the “least of these” is real.
When I am away for several weeks as I am prone to be, I miss it. I have often referred to this church as my little family of quirky activists. What we do here on Sunday seems to do a fine job to INSPIRE and motivate me through the week.
Now why is that? I can’t say exactly. It’s the place certainly, but it's more what we bring to this place. And it's what we exchange to take from this place. You help me think Holy thoughts all week long. You give me examples of how to live. Thanks.