[So this is my first Regent inspired post. I haven't been writing much, but I've been thinking a lot. This is something that's been stewing for quite some time. Tell me what you think]
For the moment, my mind is wandering. I have a hard time keeping it in these pews most Sundays. Today I'm having a particularly hard time. The preacher is a guest speaker and her jokes are stale. I find it difficult to have patience for wooden humor.
When my mind wanders it doesn't take long for my eyes to follow. Fortunately, in Church this doesn't get me into half the trouble it does in bars. There's a kid in the corner inspecting the wall. His hands are tickling up and down it. His mother is sitting behind me to the left, she's trying to get his attention to get him to sit down. He's ignoring her. I wonder what the congregation would do if I went over to join him. I can't remember the last time I gave a wall a good feel.
The preacher is talking about the Last Supper. My stomach is churning. I remember one Sunday, during a silent time of confession, my stomach rumbled. I think stomach rumbles in church are more embarrassing than farts. At least with farts most people have been trained to giggle, not so with stomach rumblings. People just try and ignore it, which in my opinion makes it worse.
Now my mind and my stomach are joining forces--Taco Bell. Number 6, the two chalupas with a taco. I lick my lips. It is a particularly severe degree of hunger when I start day-dreaming about Taco Bell.
I'm called out of my day dream by the preacher messing up. She said "Judas" instead of Jesus. I giggle to myself. Pay attention for another five minutes, then my eyes start wandering again. They drift to the back corner, where I see a pile of bread crumbs. The sleuth in me ponders this mystery; they must have been left here from last weeks communion. I smile.
I like that the sanctuary has not been vacuumed in a week. I like that there is a pile left after the Eucharist. I like that it's dirty--it serves as a good reminder.
The peculiar thing about us Christians, is that we believe that God actually stepped down into the mess--our God got dirty. He probably sat through sermons where his stomach rumbled and the preacher got his words mixed up. Our God felt walls with his fingers. Our God had a mother who cleaned him up when he got cuts and scrapes. Our God stepped down out to the ethereal glow of Heaven into our weird-murky-dirty-little world to restore it to its created purpose--to serve as a place where we can commune with God. The Eucharist ought to remind us of this. It ought to remind us that it isn't just in the bread and wine (or grape juice) that we can experience God in physical things; the whole world exists for us to experience his awesomeness. We can experience it in mud-pies, sand castles, beer, mountains and puddles.
As I stare at the pile of dried bread crumbs in the back of the sanctuary I have to thank God for all the ways I can get dirty experiencing God's glory.