Leaders, Hymnals, and Perfect Posture

by. Matt Monge

No matter how many times they explained it, it still just looked silly to me. Exasperated, they would finally give up, roll their eyes, and their faces would tell me that they were disgusted with what they perceived to be my inability to grasp the necessity, importance, and even dignity of what they were doing.

Me? I just thought it looked goofy.

Back and forth they’d walk, bodies rigid, heads barely turning or tilting, regardless of what was happening around them. It was a combination of two different walks: the graduation walk and the bride-walking-down-the-aisle walk. Slow. Deliberate. Hint of a rising-up in each step. Eyes moving back and forth, taking in the scene; but heads not daring to move.

As far as I could tell, the whole ordeal had its genesis in what was directly above those individuals. The first time I remember seeing this scenario go down, it was a hymnal that was perched directly above the individuals. (For those of you who didn’t grow up in the Sunday School ‘hood, that’s a hardback book, usually about an inch or two thick, within which one could find the lyrics and music for any number of sacred and/or religious hymns. It was the instrument of choice for many a music minister/leader/pastor/person at the end of the service.

Turn in your hymnals to hymn number 287, they’d say. Hymn 2-8-7. I Come to The Garden Alone. Hymn 2-8-7. As we sing together, really think about the words and let them move you. Is there sin in your life? Come down to the front in front of everyone and confess it to your pastor.

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