This afternoon I attended F's ordination and induction service, what a pleasure and a privilege that was.
The little Baptist church looked beautiful; an arrangement of twigs and sparkly butterflies and several clusters of candles served to create a soft ambience. In a corner tables groaned under cakes and urns bubbled merrily in readiness for pots of tea of tea to be made. This, I thought, is going to be great, people who, like the congregations I've served, know how to combine the functional and the spiritual in a coherent whole.
More and more chairs had to be carried in, and were filled up. A real buzz of excitement could be felt as service time neared...
And at the heart of it all, was F, her smile lighting up the room as she shared her call story and made her solemn vows before God and with the people she now serves. It was a lovely occasion full of love and life, rich in hope and optimism. We sang old hymns and new songs, we laughed and we prayed, we caught up with friends and we met 'new' people.
I love Baptist ordination services, because they (being very Baptisty) are tailored to the context. Today's service was no exception, and this little church should be proud of itself.
F is a very talented and loving minister, with incredible instincts and deep compassion - she will serve her people loyally and well, with the help of the Lord she loves and the support of her husband.
This could turn all sloppy, and I'm not really a sloppy kind of a girl, but I felt today that F is in the place which is every bit as right for her as the Gathering Place is for me. I came away glad of heart and feeling that God was indeed glorified in this appointment.
God bless you F. Cherish this day, and dare to believe that all those lovely things people said of you are true.
Another girlie rev in post............. yeay!