We had our monthly OneHouse worship night last night.
The very first one I sat down amidst everyone else to sing, but it became clear that wasn’t going to work. Every time since then, I find myself by the door, seated with a large group of kids and some adults, attempting to follow along. Or shouting in Burmese in the middle of a prayer, “Jor GEE! We’re PRAYING!”
Sometimes they are loud and I have to get on to them; sometimes I feel bad for the other expats, because I want to give them space to worship freely and not be watched. Sometimes I feel bad for Stephen if the kids are distracting.
Sometimes I even feel bad for myself, because I just want the space to close my eyes and not be watched myself. I don’t want what they see of me to define what they know of Christ.
But most the time, I love it. I love that they are curious. I love that they get to see us love Jesus any way we know how. I love that they sing along.
Last night, They They sat next to me, asking me over and over, “Where? Where?” When I’d show her, she’d read along and sing–granted, reading was quite a challenge for her, so following along with words and tune is just too much. It wasn’t beautiful to the ears, technically.
But, oh, it was beautiful to the ears. She followed along through the entire hour of worship, singing to each song. The other kids could pick up on the repeated choruses if they were simple enough.
My favorite was Chris Tomlin’s Good, Good Father. They all understood enough of the words–good, father, love, you, me. So they sang along to the chorus:
You’re a good, good Father
It’s who you are, it’s who you are, it’s who you are
And I’m loved by you
It’s who I am, it’s who I am, it’s who I am
Oh, golly, it made my eyes fill with tears. He is a good, good Father. And they have seen some not as good, good fathers. Knowing their stories, knowing their fathers; even hurting for and loving their fathers. Just last Sunday we stopped along the road to help one of these little girls, who was helping her drunken father to get home. We picked up the other little girls’ father at the bus station in November, when he came for a couple days, dropped off her little brother with the grandparents, and then left to return to Bangkok.
But there is a good, good Father. And he does love them, so we sang that loudly together.