I love the recent “back to school” commercial with the young boy, I will call him Tommy. In this video he is taking inventory of all his school supplies placing them neatly in front of him on a table. He is glowing while looking at new pencils and ruler and notebooks. I can identify with him. I still like visiting office supply stores looking at all the pens and notebooks and binders. To this day I have a large collection of pens mostly because I enjoy trying out the newest ones on the market. A touch of OCD hasn’t hurt me too much these past sixty-two years!
The little boy in the commercial notices the red marker is missing from the box of markers. I know exactly how he feels. I would be upset to know that a new box of markers was missing one! In this commercial he finds his little brother on the floor behind him coloring with that red marker.
Ask my sister about my possessive, selfish clinging to “things” I would never consider sharing. Even my own daughter and wife know better than to mess with the stuff on my desk! I am hopefully not as possessive as I once used to be.
My point? I am not sure I have one!
I do, however, on a slightly different track see a parellel in holding too tight to things–even as a pastor! It’s hard to break away from views I have come to value over the years. It’s hard to accept doing things in new ways. Creeds and liturgies and hymns I have valued singing and using for years can never be taken away. That’s okay. At the same time, am I willing to ahear some new tunes?
Going through the new Presbyterian hymnal (Glory to God) has been a joy-filled adventure like shopping for new school supplies. It’s exciting to come across new verses attached to timeless and sacred tunes to help the church move forward. I can hardly contain myself waiting to hear them in worship.
A touch of adhering to some of the old while partaking of fresh and new ways of doing things? Consider “The Church of Christ Cannot be Bound”, hymn #766 with text written in 2005 by Adam Tice to the ever-familiar tune, McKee (CM) tune.
Vs. 1 The church of Christ cannot be bound by walls of wood or stone. Where charity and love are found, there can the church be known.
And this verse that speaks to my trying to be possessive instead of progressive:
Vs 4 If what we have we freely share to meet our neighbors need,
then we extend the Spirit’s care through every selfless deed.
Bound and nurtured in love! Now and Forever!