Yesterday, at a clergy gathering, I ended up seated next to a good friend who has very different tastes in music than I have. At Eucharist, we sang a hymn which is firmly on my top ten list of widely used hymns that I hate.
I mean really hate.
I grew up with this one, its an oldie, but not a goodie.
And I know I shouldn't hate such things, but and I guess hate is too strong a word, but it makes me think "yuck" every time I hear it. I find it narcissistic and pedantic and overall utterly lame.
And apparently my friend loves it.
So there we sat. Sharing a service book because she came late and didn't get one. And she began to sing. And some folks stood up, and she sort of started to, but I didn't and so she stayed where the booklet was. I would have gladly handed the booklet to her, but she wasn't forward enough to take it.
She sang, as in full throttle, hands in the air, head tossed back, eyes closed, loving Jesus for all she's worth, singing.
I waited for it to end. The music itself, her singing was fine.
And then it happened.
I looked over at her and couldn't help but smile.
And then I looked again and almost had a little fun.
And at the next verse it seemed appropriate to join the standing, for her sake, not mine.
And I looked over again and she was having a blast, so I guess so was I.
And that is what worship in community looks like. It's about sharing the things we love (and keeping our unlove quiet enough to be shared with) so that you don't have to love every song, you can just enjoy it vicariously with the person next to you. And I had fun. And so did she. And worship happened. And community happened.
And next time that song comes up, I'll still hate it. But for yesterday, it was fun.
And no, I'm not going to tell you what song it was.