To the Church Member ~

You watch us file in one by one, taking the entire pew in front of you, while you quietly hum and smile to yourself, Red and yellow, black and white...

Standing to sing, you count and ask yourself, Is that one more or one less than last week? I can't keep count.

You scan the row...

The two littles fighting over who will be held first; the preteen who has never been in a church service and can't keep still; the boys punching each other in the stomachs, thinking no one sees; the teen swelling with new life in her womb; the wiggle worm making her way to the front of the church; and the mama bearing her shame on her sleeve because this is not her world, yet she'll cross chasms to sit beside her little one for an hour, whether it's a setting that is comfortable or not.

All at once, you chuckle as your eyes fill with tears, Yes, they are precious in His sight.

For the next hour and a half you watch the circus in wonder, aware you're not the only spectator.

As the benediction comes to close, prayers whispered, hands fall, you tap me on the shoulder watching one little monkey climb on my head, you smile and say, Thank you for what you do. It really is amazing and beautiful. I wish I could, but I can't.

The tears come to my eyes as I scan our crew, Thank you so much, but it's all Jesus.

Readying myself to say so much more, I hear a microphone banging against the new organ and turn to see Wiggle Worm conquering her newest quest.

I'll let you go because I know you're busy; I just wanted you to know.

My hand reaches after you because what I wanted to say...

Don't do what I do, but see her mama at the end of the row, would you invite her to lunch; hear her story? Offer a ride next week?

The one carrying life when her own is just beginning, would you plan a celebration for her? All others told her to choose death; could you celebrate her courage?

See the Worm making her way through the pews, sweep her up and hold her tight. She longs to be secure.

The boys banging on each others heads, would your husband mind grabbing the football in the back of the car, rally a couple of youth, and tossing it around with them a bit? They just need to let out their crazys.

Or maybe, that one caught between the world of childhood and cliff of her teens, take her for ice cream? She needs more love than I can ever give.

Dropping my hands I look to the faces around nodding and smiling, pointing at our row, and I whisper, Don't do what I do; do what He can do beautifully through you. Do the things I can't.

All because of Jesus ~


  1. Yes. Yes yes yes yes yes. I love you, Catie Lumpkin. So much.

  2. Catie, this has lit a fire under me. I am going to talk to my husband about that football part...

  3. Oh my yes! I hear so often, I'll never be able to do what you are doing (7 adopted foster babies). I so want a great answer...thank you!