When I was a kid, Sunday morning sermons were a bit boring to me. Oh, I liked Sunday school just fine. We got to do crafts, sing kid type Bible songs, and had a small book that had stories geared to a child's understanding. There was usually a snack of cookies and kool-aid, also. It was fun to visit with your friends and show off your Sunday best clothes.
After a short break, we'd meet up with our parents, while everyone filed into the main sanctuary of the church. If allowed, friends would get to sit together. However, we'd be admonished to be on our best behavior. Unruly giggling, talking, or kicking the pew in front of us were met with a hasty removal by a parent to the outer foyer, or even outside, where we'd be reprimanded. We may or may not be brought back inside.
So, it was one fine Sunday that some friends and I were sitting there, minding our manners, for the most part, anyway. The preacher droned on and on about attendance levels, the building fund, the upcoming church events, and the missionary field work. The hustle for money came next with the passing around of the offering plate.
Passed around from pew to pew, when it got to me, I'd proudly put my small envelope of nickles and pennies in the felt lined plate...that is if I had any left after buying candy that week.
There would be singing from the hymnal songbook, which we all tried to be the one holding it. If not, we'd just get to hum along to the music, as we couldn't see the words.
By then, we kids would have dug into our pockets or little purses to bring out our pieces of crinkly wrapped butterscotch and peppermint candies to suck on. We'd trade each other for better ones, trying to unwrap them silently. At some point, one of us (usually me) would find the short orange pencil and a blank envelope in the holder in front of us to start a game of hangman. There would be little notes to each other passed back and forth down the line, and stifling our giggles was not easy.
The preacher may have been reciting his sermon, but we weren't listening. We were in our own little world in the midst of the grown-ups.
One Sunday, as we were getting restless, someone elbowed the friend next to them, pointing to the lady sitting in the pew in front of us. Soon we all were staring in amazement. The woman had teased up hair, heavily lacquered, with who knows how many days of hairspray.
Our jaws dropped, and our eyes grew wide at the horror in front of us. A spider was crawling in and out and between the woman's carefully coiffed hair do! We were spellbound. Should we tell her? Should we make a ruckus and run screaming down the center aisle? We'd probably be in trouble either way.
What if that spider jumped on us, I mean, it was only a couple of feet in front of our faces. We leaned back into our pew as far as we could, checked our watches to see how much longer we'd be sitting there before church was let out, calculating our options. What to do? What to do?
At the crucial point of fighting the spider off, or taking flight, we were saved. Literally saved from making a descision, as the preacher called for anyone needing to be saved by salvation, to come to the front. As everyone stood up, we all took off down the aisle, past the preacher and the congregation, giggling all the way out the door.
I don't know what happened to the woman or the spider that day. Hopefully they were saved, too!
Peace, Love, & Salvation