These past few years, our church has been in the process of renovating a bowling alley to meet in. We sold T-shirts for the campaign that read “Our House. Our Story.” (They’re cool–I still wear mine. 😉 )
Well, we’ve been meeting in “Our House” for a while now, and it’s beautiful. We’ve done amazing outreaches in Our House’s neighborhood, hosted many events from weddings to funerals, and worshiped God there so many times. Mom and some of the Littles spent some extra time there during the week last summer, cleaning the bathrooms. I often went with them.
Our whole family attended a graduation there a few weeks ago, and us “older kids” stayed late to help clean up.
Confession time: I’ve always hated helping people clean up after parties. I’m happy to help, but I never quite know what to do or where to put things away–and I hate situations where I don’t have all the information!
I started helping some other girls who were arranging the sanctuary chairs, when my older sister called me to help her clean the bathrooms. I followed her out, and ran straight to the closet where I knew the cleaning supplies would be. I took the job I always did, and it felt so familiar: I snagged the stainless steel cleaner, sprayed the sinks down, scrubbed the faucets, wiped the water-marks off the paper towel holders. This was my house, this was my story, I knew what to do.
We propped open the door to the men’s bathroom, and I didn’t even feel that awkward scouring the sinks there. I got down on the ground and scrubbed footprints off the floor, and let the feeling of home sink in.
Having our house wasn’t really about stained-glass windows, polished pews, or (even!) an air-conditioned place to meet. It’s a place where everyone fits in, everyone can serve. A place where we can be a family.
My house, my story.
Your house, your story.
Our house. Our story.