If you’re having trouble sleeping at night, pull out your Bible and read Exodus 36-39. I’m not one to say a particular passage of holy text is boring, but for most folk, these
four chapters are pretty boring. In four lengthy, detailed (and I mean detailed) chapters, God gives Moses the instructions for building the Tabernacle — the movable tent of worship used by Israel while wandering in the wilderness. The blueprints are precise: what type thread for the hem of the tabernacle awnings, how to construct and carve the furniture and what type basin to install for the washing of hands. I guess it’s an interior designer’s dream…it puts the rest of us to sleep. Practically, however, when the Israelites engaged this work, it shaped them into the people of God and provided a space for God to do God’s work among them. This was the business and busyness of God’s people in that era.
When some congregation members hear the words ‘church conference,’ they think — boring. While we understand and enjoy the place of prayer, song, sermon, liturgy and ritual in the life of the church, business meetings just seem… well… boring. They tend to be about committees and budgets and paint and parking and light bulbs and carpet and… well… you get the picture. But practically, it’s our engagement with the nitty-gritty nuts and bolts of church life that helps shape us into the community God wants us to be and helps us create space for God to do God’s work among us and in the world.
On Sunday, November 15, we will integrate a ‘church conference’ into our morning worship service. We will vote on a budget for 2016, vote on nominated committee members and deacons for 2016 and hear a report from our Foundation. We will commission a group of servants to go to Cuba and get an update on the Lula Whilden Offering. All of this will be molded into our worship of God and bathed in prayer. It is our business, our busyness, our chapter that some might find boring, mundane and fodder for napping. But for us, it is part of the fashioning of our faith. It is the work of God.