DISCLAIMER: This blog post is in no way meant to hurt feelings or bring judgment on anyone. I am merely sharing what is happening in my heart right now.
I headed out this year to look for something for the kids to wear for Easter. We've never gone crazy on Christmas or Easter clothes, but I always get them something fairly inexpensive. I mean, after all, I love clothes. Especially kids clothes. As I looked at the choices this year, my heart fell to my stomach as I realized that the amount I would spend on special outfits for this occasion would literally feed, clothe, educate (mentally and spiritually), and keep healthy a child in Uganda for a MONTH! A MONTH! I just couldn't do it. I was sad, but I knew that my not buying those outfits was the right choice, for us. Just a few weeks after that, God provided us with some pretty cute Easter outfits in the form of hand-me-downs. There was something for each kid to wear. What a blessing!
Now, as Easter Sunday gets closer, my dilemma has changed to, "What will I wear?" You see, we've invited all of our Afterschool Adventure families to join us in church this weekend. This is really the first time we've invited them to church for something other than Family Quest. I really pray that they will come. I really pray they will feel welcome when they get there. But, they will be coming on the most "glamorous" day of the whole year. Many of them have little money and dress very casually. I have no idea if any of them have dress clothes, the kids or the parents. When they walk in and everyone else is dressed to the nines, will that make them want to turn and walk out the door before the service even begins? Will those at church look down on them because they aren't all dressed up like us? So, my dilemma is, do I dress more casually so that those who may come (whether they are from this ministry or are just guests) will feel comfortable enough to be able to hear the Gospel message that will be presented and possibly risk looks and comments from those in church who will feel like I should be "better dressed"...or do I follow the Easter tradition of being really dressed up and just hope that our guests won't notice? (I told you this is a shallow dilemma!) I am still not sure what it is I need to do. I feel silly for even making this a big deal. But I know that it really is something, even though it is small, that could make a difference to others around me, guests and church members alike.
Lord, give me clear direction. Show me how to be your hands and feet, in the way I dress and the way I greet and love on those You send through the doors of our church this weekend. Move in a mighty way in churches across the nation this weekend, whether they meet in gyms, fancy sanctuaries, or under the overpass with their city's homeless population. Make Your name known!