Sunday, October 07, 2007

Two parables on worship and unity

BLOGGER'S NOTE: I'm making up for lost time with this entry. It was what my choir and contemporary worship leadership team received on Wednesday evening, September 26 before a combined worship service the following Sunday (9/30).

Since the whole ministerial staff was out of town the last time we had a combined worship service, I have little information on how things went. It always makes me nervous because of the tendency we have to be divided over worship style issues. Two parables follow: 1) the Aesop fable I shared with the Sanctuary Choir and with First Light on the Wednesday evening before that Sunday, and; 2) a joke that may teach.
At one time the Fox and the Stork were on visiting terms and seemed very good friends. So the Fox invited the Stork to dinner, and for a joke put nothing before her but some soup in a very shallow dish. This the Fox could easily lap up, but the Stork could only wet the end of her long bill in it, and left the meal as hungry as when she began. “I am sorry, said the Fox, “the soup is not to your liking.”
“Pray do not apologize,” said the Stork. “I hope you will return this visit, and come and dine with me soon.” So a day was appointed when the Fox should visit the Stork; but when they were seated at table all that was for their dinner was contained in a very long-necked jar with a narrow mouth, in which the Fox could not insert his snout, so all he could manage to do was to lick the outside of the jar.
“I will not apologize for the dinner,” said the Stork:


The new rabbi of an old congregation found himself in an awkward situation. Week after week, when the Shema was said, half the congregants would stand, and half stay seated. Each group yelled at the other to sit back down or get up on their feet. Baffled by this cacophony, the rabbi turned for advice to the housebound elder of the synagogue. “Is it the tradition to stand during the Shema?” he demanded.
The old man answered, “No, that is not the tradition.”
“Then the tradition is to sit during the Shema!”
The old man answered, “No, that is not the tradition.”
Then the young rabbi said to the old man, “We can’t continue like this. Whenever we get to the Shema, the congregants fight, yelling at each other about whether they should sit or stand….”
“Aha!” the old man interrupted, “That is the tradition!”

This Sunday morning each of us will be both guest and host in worship. We may have visitors who need to see the love of Christ demonstrated. That’s enough to think about for now.


Post a Comment

Subscribe to Post Comments [Atom]

<< Home