My husband and I went to an earlier church service than our usual 11:00.  We did so because our youngest was singing with the choir at both services.

When I arrived, and went to take a seat.  I noticed one entire pew was filled with hymnals (saving the entire row).

It was 8:00 in the morning, so whoever was saving their seats came in to the worship center, marked their spot (like a dog hikes his leg), then went on their way to class.

After the kids finished one last practice of their songs and their comings and goings, I decided to stay there so I would be able to get a video of Kaitlyn.

As the 9:30 crowd came in, there was frustration as the person that apparently “saved their seats,” saved the wrong row.  The row they MEANT to save was the row that myself, my husband and oldest daughter now sat. 

Sour remarks were made.  Me being the cool tempered person I am, refrained from making any negatory comments (yes, you should be proud); however, my frustrations grew.

BUT, what REALLY made me angry, was when two obvious guests came to sit down right behind us, couldn’t because the ENTIRE ROW WAS SAVED FOR FOUR PEOPLE!

By now my husband is coaxing me, “Stacey, calm down. It’s OK.”  Instead of me doing NOTHING, I should have gotten up, put the hymnals away and invited the guests to sit with us.  If I hadn’t been so angry, I might have figured that out (see what happens when you get angry; you miss opportunities to be the hand and feet of Jesus!)

My point is, in case my frustrations hasn’t explained it, is if we save pews every Sunday, and sit in the EXACT same space EVERY SUNDAY, we will NEVER meet new people!

AND, what is even worse . . . .  What does that say to our guests??!! 

It says, “You are NOT welcome here.”

“Lord may I never be so self-centered and interested in ‘just me and my space.’  Forgive me for missing the opportunity to welcome our guests.  Forgive my anger and frustrations in just remembering the events of the morning.  Thank you for loving me in spite of my flaws.  Thank you for the people you put in my path that didn’t save seats and became friends.  Amen.”