Glory to Glory
But we all, with unveiled face, beholding as in a mirror the glory of the Lord, are being transformed into the same image from glory to glory, just as from the Lord, the Spirit. 2 Corinthians 3:18 (NASB)
"You go to church, don't you?"
"Umm... yes, yes, I do."
"Do you not find it repetitive?"
The day when a work colleague asked me this question eight years ago I didn't have a ready answer. Terry was a practical kind of man, always involved with some project or other. He enjoyed being busy - fixing up his house, his car, his daughter's flat. He worked at twice the pace of the rest of us and when he had finished his job for the day, he would find some scrap materials and knock up a small model aircraft. He enjoyed variety.
I have thought about our short conversation many times since and have replayed the moment over and over in my mind. I could have replied this way and that way and the other way. My best reply until a few weeks ago was something like, "Yes, it is repetitive - in the same way that my daughters find it repetitive when I kiss them goodnight, every night." It was good, but was it an adequate description of a city on a hill that cannot be hidden? It was the best I could do.
The most glorious wisdom usually comes by way of children.
A few weeks ago, at church, something happened. We had enjoyed fellowship and a coffee and it was time to find my two young daughters and leave the building. I found them playing with some of the other girls from church. Natalie was underneath a table with Eva and there was some hustle and bustle. I asked what was going on. Katie patiently explained to me that they were in the middle of an imaginary game.
"Each week we pick up the story from where we left off last week".
Wait! What? A better answer to my question just tripped off the tongue of a child as easy as you like. Her statement trumped all of the answers that I have thought of down the years to the question Terry made that day.
Katie said, "We don't stay the same.”
We don't go over the same ground each week at our meetings. We walk with the Lord through the week and when we meet we celebrate together the new places of glory that the Lord has led us into. As each one celebrates the glory which they have seen, all the rest are glad and behold the glory of God in another's face as in a mirror.
There is no repetition with glory. Variety and interest abound. When we meet together each week, we don't begin the game over. We pick up from where we left off last week. We will converse, we will "reason together" (Isaiah). Each will help the other to keep moving forward, going from glory to glory to glory.