My church gathered together to have a Workday. One day where we all clean and organize the church. Rooms that have been collecting donated books and clothes. Dusting lamps, painting walls, and washing the windows. Moving the chairs and vacuuming. And after the work was done, we all ate a big meal together and even had pie!
While I was cleaning I couldn't help but think of my chores when I lived at home as a teenager. Making sure my bed was made, room picked up, and the dreaded spring cleaning the whole family would have to partake in every year. This reminded me so much of being like a child with all my siblings running around each of us with our assigned job to do.
Our Pastor explained that the work day was necessary due to Thanksgiving coming up. And since we plan on inviting company to the church to share in a big Thanksgiving meal, what do you usually do when one invites guests to one's home? Clean! Pastor Scott also wanted us to understand that the cleaning wasn't just to get the church some free labor, but a way for us to connect with one another that we normal wouldn't. He explained that as a family we only see each other one day a week and really only speak to each other for a few quick minutes before service starts. A few minutes isn't really long enough for you to get to know anyone. A quick, "Hello, how are you?" Won't tell you that that person is really struggling or really hurt or even if they have had wonderful news.
This never occurs to us on a daily basis. Saying hello to someone every day who gets coffee at your coffee shop is a nice gesture, however, you never really get to know the person and what their life it like. Where as a family knows everything about each other. Who's grounded, who gets to go to the movies, who is has to write a three page essay or give a speech at work.
So coming back to scrubbing church window sills, moving furniture and painting walls; I can't help but notice that Pastor Scott was right. One woman's arm was in a sling, she might have to have surgery, a man had to take a seat because of his low blood sugar, another woman explained she was uncomfortable with having her picture taken and posted online. As I cleaned I kept thinking about being a child and cleaning my parents' and thinking how fitting that I would clean my Father's house as well. Not only do I come and visit him on a weekly basis but I visit with my siblings too, and now we have done our chores and readied the house for visitors!
I'm excited for the Thanksgiving Dinner my church is hosting and even more that I received the visual that God is more of a Father figure to me in many other ways now. Not just because I trust in him to look out for me as a father would his child, but because I truly am his child and my siblings and I got together and cleaned his house. We respect our parent enough to meet and work together and in turn show love for one another as well.