For the last year, Steve and I spent a lot of time talking, reading and praying about church. What should it look like? How should the music sound? Where should kids go?
We found a church in Asheville. It’s so different from the churches we have been part of for the last ten years, but right now, it feels right. I think these could be our people, our community.
There isn’t a stage. There aren’t lights or speakers everywhere. Kids are all over the place.
It feels open and unpolished and real. The pastor set aside time to let people ask questions and an incredible conversation about racism occurred.
During the service, I stand in the back and walk back and forth with Kenna. She won’t go to class, she wants nothing to do with strangers, I get it. She started to fuss. No one turned around. I started to walk to the door to hang out in the hall and the man standing by the door looked at me and said, “Stay. She’s not bothering anyone”.
I wish I could explain how much that moment meant. It brought tears to my eyes.
My whole life I have been in churches where children are great…as long as they aren’t disturbing anyone else. Sure, keep your kid in the service, as long as they don’t bother me. Even in churches we have visited where the whole family stays together, you can feel the stress coming off parents who try to keep a toddler quiet and still. I’ve heard this a lot, “I can’t learn if there’s a kid being loud” or “I shouldn’t have to listen to your kid cry while I’m at church to learn”.
Dude. What are you at church to learn about? Patience? Love? Grace? Mercy?
Maybe kids are even better teachers than the person behind a podium. Kids consistently show me what it means to love. They teach me patience, grace and mercy every day.
Thank you Fellowship Asheville, thank you for being a place I can go with my whole family- even when they aren’t quiet and still.