Just Pull Up A Chair

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It was an impromptu barbecue.
It was an unplanned grilling of steaks.
It was an afternoon and evening with most of my children.
Spouses and my sweet granddaughter were here as well.

Impromptu gatherings are the best kind.
As long as you have a stocked pantry, a meal can be whipped up in no time.
My husband wanted to grill steaks, so I went out and bought a few more for dinner.
I made two large side dishes of roasted fresh vegetables and a large salad.

It was so good to be together.
That is what I want our home to be.
A home that has an open door, come whenever you can, kind of atmosphere.
That makes impromptu gatherings happen more often.

When it was time to eat dinner, all the food was served on the kitchen island.
We all ate our dinner on the deck.
We have a hexagonal table with six chairs.
There were seven of us eating dinner that night.

Just pull up chair, I said to my husband as I was getting the table ready.
Our hexagonal table with six chairs became a hexagonal table with seven chairs.
We all fit around the table.
The baby swing, holding our granddaughter, was on the deck along with our son’s dog.

Just pull up chair, is becoming the way of things.
There is always room for one more.
There is always space around the table.
The door is always open.

I thought of our impromptu family gathering as I walked into church.
This was the day that our two services would be combined into one large service.
I was so excited about the change.
Often, having two services can feel as if there are two separate churches.

I was looking forward to meeting the people that I never have the chance to meet.
I was looking forward to seeing the church even more full than any other Sunday morning.
I was looking forward to hearing the singing with double the voices from the previous Sunday.
I was looking forward to all of us being together.

When we walked into the sanctuary, I noticed that the rows of chairs went further back.
I noticed that the space between the aisles was a bit narrower.
I noticed that people were gathering and genuinely glad to see each other.
I thought of our deck from the night before: Just pull up a chair.

Just pull up a chair and sit down.
Just pull up a chair and join us.
Just pull up a chair and stay a while.
Just pull up and chair and share a meal with us.

I thought about the fact that what I say in my home can easily be said in church as well.
There’s plenty of room.
Come join us.
We are so glad to have you here.

I looked around at all the families.
I listened to all of our voices as we worshiped.
Voices that had been separated the week before were now together.
It was glorious.

I noticed ushers leading people to available seats.
I saw the faces of the worship team as they looked out onto the large congregation.
We were all in one place and it was good.
It was very good.

One of the worship songs had the men sing one verse and the women sing another.
I watched a young family from across the room.
I know this young mom.
She has been in my home with her children.

I happened to look over when the men were asked to sing.
Her husband was singing.
Her little boy was singing as well.
She was smiling as she looked down at her son.

It was then I realized that, just pull up a chair, means so much more.
Just pull up a chair, enables the generations to be together.
Just pull up a chair, makes it much easier to glean from those who have walked before us.
Just pull up a chair, makes it feel more like family.

Just pull up a chair may mean that it is a little more crowded.
Just pull up a chair helps us to be more other centered.
Just pull up a chair sets the tone of warmth, hospitality, and community.
Just pull up a chair shows that there is always room for one more.

Therefore welcome one another as Christ has welcomed you, for the glory of God.
(Romans 15:7 ESV)

Just pull up a chair to the Father’s table.
God the Father delights in the addition of one more.
There is always room.
It is the Family of God.

I look forward to next Sunday’s service.
Just pull up a chair and join us.
Can you imagine what our churches would be like if we said this on a regular basis?
Community, fellowship, sharing a meal together, welcoming one another in His name.

We need to practice this in our homes.
We need to practice this in our churches.
Watch the people come.
It means so much when someone knows they are welcome.

There is always room.
Just pull up a chair.


Whispers of His Movement and Whispers in Verse books are now available in paperback and e-book!


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