Monday Gifts: Fellowship Offerings

When Jesus said, “Come to me, all who are weary and I will give you rest,” I think he had in mind the ministry-mom walking in the door after church. It’s early to church for me on Sundays, stay for two services, home at (a late) lunch time. One child wants to tell me about Sunday school, the other child just wants me, and we are all hungry for lunch. They fight to hug me first. I fight to wash hands and sit down. My husband has entered Sunday afternoon “time-off”, after all, he’s just done the whole single-dad church routine all morning.

Hours of people interaction on Sundays turn into moments of people desecration on Monday (i.e. snapping at children nearly the minute the get up). It’s not that I want to scream, it’s that I do scream. They reach for cookies at breakfast, after I said, “No cookies.” I scream. They color on toys. I scream. They pull all my pillows off the bed and refuse to pick them up. I scream.

Please show me the screaming moms in scripture. They must be there somewhere between the crazy pigs and the talking donkey.

Actually, I think Jesus was a screaming mom. Remember the time he was preaching on the shore when the crowd pushed and pushed so hard that Jesus backed straight into the water (which probably felt good to his dusty feet)? He had to escape into a boat and back away from shore. He had to go home to twelve “children”. Twelve men, infants of faith, constantly with him, constantly confused. I know he must have screamed some. Although the difference between him and me? He was without sin.

My Monday goal? To scream without sinning. I think that’s only possible by changing the direction of my frustration: aim it away from my children. Or better yet, burn that frustration on the altar.

And while we’re talking of sacrifices, how about this verse?

Deuteronomy 27:6-7, “Build the altar of the LORD your God with fieldstones and offer burnt offerings on it to the LORD your God. Sacrifice fellowship offerings there, eating them and rejoicing in the presence of the LORD your God.”

Burnt offerings are for sin, and Jesus’s sacrifices covers that. But I think I understand fellowship offerings.

My new Monday goal? To view meal time as fellowship time, not only with each other, but in the presence of the Lord. It can be a sacrifice to set aside tiredness and impatience to enjoy meal time together as a family. However, if I am truly grateful for my daily bread, then I can view the partaking of it as a gift. A gift of nourishment, not just that of food and body, but of fellowship and spirit.

 

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