As a preacher's daughter at a two point charge, Kathleen typically attends two church services on Sunday. One at 9:30 a.m. and then another at 11 a.m. Each church family is so thrilled to see her walk in the door. She is absolutely loved on from start to finish and tired at the end! Both of the churches also serve communion on the first and third Sundays so Kathleen is learning the routine of what it means to come to the table. This past month we've had a couple very meaningful moments in worship with our daughter and communion so I would like to share them now.
About a month ago at Spring Valley UMC Kathleen was brought from the nursery as usual to join us for communion. When Calvin broke the bread and gave it to her he said "This is the body of Christ, given for you." Then Kathleen lifted it up and responded "Thank you God." Calvin and I both heard it clearly but in an effort to keep from crying we did not look at each other. We both just held our breath and the moment in our hearts. I then took the bread from her, dipped it in the cup and she ate it. Then I took communion as well. And I believe on the way back to our seat in the pew Kathleen said, "Yummy bread."
Then last week as we took communion at Gillburg UMC we stood in line to wait our turn. I picked Kathleen up so that she could be served and after being handed the bread from Calvin, she replied "Thank you" in response. As we walked across the front of the church to sit back down Kathleen pointed to the altar rail and said, "I want to pray a minute." I looked at her with a questioning face and she pointed again to the rail and said, "I want to pray a minute." So I took her to kneel at the altar rail. She put her knees on the bench and placed her hands in front of her with her head bowed. I prayed and she repeated after me, "Thank you God. (pause for Kathleen to repeat) Please forgive me. (pause) I love you. (pause) Amen." She prayed every word clearly and confidently. Then we went back to our seat. I was in tears.
As our dear friend Jessica put it, it is such a joy to see our little girl growing and learning what it means to love the Lord. My prayer for Kathleen since she was an infant is that the Lord would use her life for a purpose greater than herself and I know He is already doing just that even at this young age. These beautiful moments from the innocent heart of a child show me once again why scripture instructs us to be more like them.