Plexiglas, Politics, and Pews

It has begun. A new congress has been sworn in. Reports of shouting matches taking place between opposing side’s staffers. Pelosi has been chosen Speaker of the House for the 4th time. Controversial issues have already started to make their way through news outlets … such as impeachment talks (again), election chaos, and an awkward end to the opening prayer (can I get an “Amen”, or even an “Awomen”?)

There was even the debacle over plexiglas for three congressional representatives that were in supposedly in quarantine. Quarantine! Really? It was as if Inigo Montoya should be telling them, “You keep using that word. I do not think it means what you think it means.”

Special arrangements were made for three people so they could attend and vote (for Pelosi so the word in the Twitter world says, for she only won by seven votes.) Here’s the rub, they only did it for the Democrats, and didn’t even tell Republicans it was going to be done or that it was even an option. It was as if there are special favors and conditions for the majority/ruling class.

I wonder, if a Democrat had passed away after the election but before the swearing in, would special area set up with an Ouija board been used. (Oops, Sorry. Too far?) You have got to laugh at politics, it can get pretty funny sometimes. But this scenario got me thinking.

I’m okay with helping people show up and be responsible. Going out of our way to get people in the door might be the noble and right thing to do. Shouldn’t we make accommodations for people, within safety factors of course? Shouldn’t we take special efforts to help everyone be included?

Think about church for a minute. What can we do to help people to attend and to be engaged in worship? Many places have assistive hearing devices, sign languages, family/crying baby rooms (which are often walled/plexiglassed off), overflow and handicap seating just to name a few.

Yes, we might go too far … LazyBoy section for resistant dads or stacked fishing pond section for our fishing/hunting people.

The issue here isn’t doing what we can to reasonably help all to attend, it’s the “all” word. Apparently, the congressional redecorating was only for one side, for select and preferred people.

What if I did this as a pastor? Say, set up a special section for big donors. A section that promised a shorter service or preferred music to those that gave a certain amount. Or maybe I specifically only permitted men up front, and then placed women in the back. Maybe I can add a section near me for people I know and I like … who will Amen (or Awomen in this PC world, jk) on demand.

Giving preferred treatment in a house of the Lord is not only inappropriate, it’s biblically wrong. And if our body is the Temple of the Holy Spirit, then to do it on a personal level is not cool either.

So take a lesson on ‘how not to do it’ from this years congressional opening. I say nice try, but it falls a little short and way too much on one side. May everyone of us be considerate of ALL others, not just the ones we like. May we be better in our pews than they are with their politics.


Editor’s comments: the joke about ‘Awomen’ is because the opening prayer in congress ended in ‘Amen and Awomen.’ Let the eye rolling begin.

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