Sunday, March 22, 2009

The Beatles/A Hymn/and A Sunday Morning Pastor

Before reading, please sing the Beatle's Eleanor Rigby. Done? Make sure the chorus is playing in your head... All the lonely people, where do they all come from? All the lonely people, where do they all belong? Ahhh, look at all the lonely people...(repeat last phrase.) So, are you with me now?

On Sunday mornings, I awake thinking of the day ahead. I rise earlier than most any morning of the week and go downstairs to my chair. I pray. I seek strength. I rehearse my sermon for the morning--sifting it through my spirit and hopefully a Greater One. And I feel alone.

Around the area where I live I know there are people, preparing to rendezvous with me at the "meeting place." (I always like that Quaker title better than "church.") I begin seeing their faces. There are parents who are hurting for sick or rebellious children. Elderly who are wondering if they can make it again ("Just hanging in there," I'll hear one say in another few hours). There are some couples struggling to stay faithful--or who have no idea their spouse is. There are teenagers doing life as if it feels like walking through deep oncoming water--or motor oil. There are single people wishing they were loved. There are people awaiting a diagnosis...cancer? There are children who will run to me for a hug. (God bless the children.)

And somehow in the strange way we do church, I will be a key to providing hope and healing to all of these.

I pray for the strength--the faith to perform.

I weep here alone in my chair, before anyone else gets up.

And I go to facebook hoping for a friend. One pastor after another has already been there, or drops-by while I am. Some mention sermon topics, others psych themselves up with a positive statement. And none of us comment on the others, or speak using the chat feature. We post no notes to each other. What can we say? We are storming the beaches today, and once again, we wonder if we'll survive.

Ah, look at all the lonely people
Ah, look at all the lonely people

Eleanor rigby picks up the rice in the church where a wedding has been
Lives in a dream
Waits at the window, wearing the face that she keeps in a jar by the door
Who is it for?

All the lonely people
Where do they all come from ?
All the lonely people
Where do they all belong ?

Father mckenzie writing the words of a sermon that no one will hear
No one comes near.
Look at him working. darning his socks in the night when there's nobody there
What does he care?

All the lonely people
Where do they all come from?
All the lonely people
Where do they all belong?

Eleanor rigby died in the church and was buried along with her name
Nobody came
Father mckenzie wiping the dirt from his hands as he walks from the grave
No one was saved

All the lonely people
Where do they all come from?
All the lonely people
Where do they all belong?


And there is another text, this one by Edwin Hatch:
Breathe on me, Breath of God,
fill me with life anew,
that I may love what thou dost love,
and do what thou wouldst do.

Breathe on me, Breath of God,
until my heart is pure,
until with thee I will one will,
to do and to endure.

Breathe on me, Breath of God,
till I am wholly thine,
till all this earthly part of me
glows with thy fire divine.



craydavi said...

Good morning David! I enjoyed reading your blog this morning. It not only reminded me of "all the lonely people" but also of the frequest lack of community and communication among people (esp. pastors) during the rest of the week. I was also reminded of one of my best friends ever and one who exuded Christian community. He as a college friend from Puerto Rico and used to sing a song with a similar theme and folksy guitar accompaniment from the 70's...but I can't remember it and the only thing I find through google is this very good song (also from the 70's and re-done by Jars of Clay):

david said...

Went to church. Was loved as much as I loved others. A breeze of grace and peace brushed my spirit with hope. A friend found out while we waited to begin the service, that a young boy he teaches in school died yesterday. We cried together--the band and his wife surrounding him. We finished the prayer and another was crying...he taught the boy last year. Ahh, life...and death.

Look at all the lonely people. And find a few to love.

Zee said...


Zee said...

went to youtube and listened to the song... heh, now i definitely will have it stuck as a lullaby in my head (as it's 11:36PM in good ol' Kiev)...

i've heard the song before, but never really paid attention to it... *sigh*...

craydavi - thanks for sharing the link. it's a good song.