I did not attend church yesterday. I was visiting older friends, out-of-town, who do not normally attend church. We spent the morning sipping our various warm-wake-us-up-drinks, chatting, relaxing and generally enjoying the calm of another cold winter morning. The grey clouds veiled the sun from us. The winds blew whistles in the trees. We stayed inside, in the warmth, of my hostesses home and her friendship.
Our conversations flowed with the ease of old friends, reacquainting ourselves with each other. We talked of our children, the Olympic games, favorite foods, and our individual faiths. We did not rush. We just relaxed.
As the morning waned to the afternoon our hostess excitedly told of a pastor on television that gives a great sermon. She told us he is not like any pastor we have heard preach and insisted we watch this mornings message. I will not mince words here, I was not interested. I take my sermons from trusted pastors in familiar settings, like a church. I am of an era that remembers the scandals of TV evangelists. People that got rich from little old ladies sitting in their living rooms trusting the reverend who gave a “great sermon”. They being of the era that knows their tithing is a direct path to righteousness. Then the scandals would explode on mainstream media. The women, and men, who trusted their earthly souls to a person, who took their money for their own benefits and ran. It is heartbreaking for me to see the trust so generously given, be stripped away so completely. So, I do not give a lot of credibility to this form of religion.
Yet I sat down and opened my mind to the words this pastor imparted to the millions this Sunday morning. His message talked about judgment. How we should not be standing in judgment of others. Quotes from the bible rolled off his tongue, he added in funny antidotes, and knowingly talked of theologians. He talked to his congregation as if he was talking with a group of old college friends. He seemed at ease with his stardom. Without really thinking about it I started taking notes in my journal. I was jotting down the bible references, adding in my personal thoughts, just plain wanting to remember the words that he spoke that did mean something to me.
At the end of the message our hostess turned to me with a smile and asked, “Wasn’t that a good message?” I honestly responded with “Yes it really was.”
You may not be looking for inspiration, but sometimes inspiration finds you. Be sure to keep your hearts and minds open to our world around us, you never know where you will find inspiration next.