When I was serving Wesley United Methodist Church in Beaumont, the staff loved going to a Chinese restaurant that was unlike any other I had ever experienced. The restaurant had a long buffet in the center of the dining area. One side of the buffet was filled with all the traditional Chinese buffet food. If you decided to visit the other side of the buffet, you wouldn’t find egg rolls or sweet and sour chicken. Instead you would find tacos, rice, beans and other Tex-Mex favorites. Nearly every time we walked into that restaurant, one of us would exclaim, “If Chinese and Tex-Mex food can live together in peace and unity on the same buffet, why can’t we all just get along?” You know, as corny as that line is, I have thought a lot about it these past months.
The division and the fighting I see in our country and in the United Methodist Church make some want to ask the question, “Why can’t we all just get along?” I don’t know about you, but all of it breaks my heart and wears me out. This is why I am asking you for a favor this Sunday when we will celebrate the Eucharist.
Since being appointed to First United Methodist Church Missouri City, my favorite Sundays have been my first four. If you remember, those are Sundays we worshipped together. Those were the Sundays that we put aside our different worship styles, our own preferences and wants to come together as the Body of Christ to worship the One True God. This week, as we celebrate Holy Communion, I am asking you to come together once again in worship. We are combining the Open Skies and Sanctuary Services so that we can be together to share a common meal. I would love for the Chapel Service to join us. When we made the worship time changes in September, we promised not to combine the Chapel service with the others. However, it would warm my heart if we are all together in worship is Sunday.
I know that many of you stay home when we combine these services, but I hope this week you will do me the favor of simply coming together. I guess I am being selfish, but it would help my heart to see this Church that I love put aside worship differences for this Sunday. Would you do this for me? After all, if Chinese and Tex-Mex food can live together in peace and unity on the same buffet . . .