Thursday, August 04, 2005

Jesus Outed in Megachurch, Film at 11, Part 1


After the services start it thins out, but it's a madhouse at other times.
________________________________________

I found him. I found Jesus at a Megachurch.

He was in the closet and I outed him.

Here is the story...

I went on a bright Sunday morning to a Megachurch that houses 22,000 people on any given Sunday. I waited to park my car in Lot 47, It took awhile as I was behind 37 SUVs and MiniVans.

Fortunately, I left early enough anticipating this, and I wanted to get a good seat in viewing room 19, or possibly room 11, which is near espresso bar 4.

But I want you, dear readers, to know that I came with one thought, to find Jesus.

As I was about to sit down in viewing room 11 I saw Bob Shindler walking by. I had seen him once about three years back at this church, which is called "Estuary Bay Church". They had tried to get "Riverbend", but that and "Creek Hollow" had been taken. In either event it is nowhere near water.

That morning, Bob and I shared a ten minute latte at espresso bar 7 and after a deep three minute conversation we exchanged business cards and promised to keep in touch. I had not seen him since.

Bob saw me and came over.

"Hey, er..."

"Mac"

"Yeah! Mac-Buddy...howzit han...er, how ya doing?"

"Good Bob. Gosh I've been here about 30 times since I saw you last but I've never seen ya. Did you move?"

"Nope. Been here every week. We have saved seats up in deck 3, aisle 305."

"Wow. Impressive"

"Sure is. We got it when we became Mustard-Seed Partners. Hey Mac...you know what? My wife is sick this morning...we got an extra seat. Come up with me."

So I did. I always was kinda curious what the live event looked like. Once before I almost got in service 5 during the NFL playoffs, but only made it to video-room 3.

So this was a real treat, and as I said I was looking to meet the J-Man.

We took the elevator up and made it to our seats just in time.

I admit it was still hard to see. Mustard Seed seats were, well apty named. The pastor and the band behind him looked a bit like a spilled packet of moveable seeds. But it was no big deal because fiftenn rows down a flat-panel monitor was mounted to the ceiling and gave a close up view.

The singing had begun but I noticed no one in Section 305 was singing. I thought that odd. I'd always kinda liked the singing, and they did do some of that in the viewing rooms, but there were only maybe 500 people per room, so it was a lot more intimate.

"Thanks Bob, this is nice. How is the practice?"

"Oh I gave that up two years ago," he smiled.

"Really, whatcha doing now?"

"Amway distributor," he said. "yep, 16 of my top distributors are right here in this section, and another 8 over in 307."

I felt a little ill, so I just looked ahead.
_______________________
Part 2 on the way...

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11 Comments:

At 3:06 PM , Blogger tabitha jane said...

my parents were amway dist for a while. i HATED it. still do.

 
At 5:00 PM , Blogger Mac said...

Yeah..that was my point...and also how there are so many side agendas in a megachurch

 
At 8:59 AM , Blogger tabitha jane said...

most of them seem to have to do with money in some degree or another . . .

 
At 9:13 AM , Blogger Mac said...

Hey Tabs! I'm doing the re-write today...plus I split the article up into two. Both shd be done by early aft.

 
At 12:22 PM , Blogger tabitha jane said...

today as in monday?

 
At 3:59 PM , Blogger tabitha jane said...

mac, i cut and pasted your story into a word doc and sent it as an attachment to an email so he could read it. he just wrote me back and said this, "I am only about a quarter of the way through, and it is great! There are people out there."
thanks for putting to words what we have been feeling and struggling with for so long!

i'm trying to get my husband to start a blog too, i think you two would have a lot to dialogue about.

 
At 4:00 PM , Blogger tabitha jane said...

sorry, when i said "he" above, i meant my husband.

 
At 9:55 AM , Blogger Kirk Bartha said...

How funny is this...I'll have to be reading more of this.

 
At 4:50 PM , Blogger wilsonian said...

This whole piece is just brilliant!

 
At 11:02 PM , Blogger Tony Myles said...

Dude... what's sad is that you've just described what many churches want to become.

*sigh*

 
At 7:54 AM , Blogger J Hearne said...

Thank you very much for this piece. It was very good and I've suggested it to many others. Peace and Love.

 

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