ACW

ACW

Wednesday, 8 July 2015

Harmony and Unity

by Annie Try

Monday

We arrive in dribs and drabs - a few ex-lawyers, NHS leavers, accountants, housewives, retired teachers, carers, those who've never needed to work and a milliner.  There's only one ex-professional amongst us.

The bare hall is shabby, with one redeeming full-height glass wall framing a tiny courtyard.  Amateur artwork adorns the walls, attempting to brighten the space and cover peeling paintwork.  Nothing reveals the activity that is about to occur.

The sole man appears.  Ladies changing their clothes do not bat an eyelid but carry on getting ready.  The secret weapons, bottles of water, are placed one-by-one on most of the well-spaced chairs, until the room resembles an audience of waiting H2O.

The tutor walks in and puts on different shoes from her bag.  Gradually the other occupants of the hall drift towards their self-allotted space, awaiting her instructions.  Feet are stretched, arms lifted, shoulders raised and gently lowered.  Recent members of the class copy the tutor clumsily.  The music starts and the anticipation grows.  With everyone poised and ready the tutor counts: 1-2-3, 2-2-3, 3-2-3

Somehow, incredibly, the space becomes magically transformed as twenty eight over-55's assume the essence of ballet and gracefully move in harmony with the music.

Tuesday

My husband and I visit John Lewis to look at cameras.  Job done, we have a coffee in the cafeteria. We watch couples and small groups chatting among themselves.  Lone eaters sit with newspapers or focus on the food in front of them.  An announcement informs us that at 11.30 there will be a minute's silence, to honour those killed in the 7/7 bombings ten years ago.

The time comes, with the speaker asking all customers to join in.  Everyone in the bustling cafe becomes quiet.  People sit like statues, even the babies only gurgle quietly.  Slowly heads turn a little to look at each other across the room. There is a sense of unity, togetherness.  The minute passes and all becomes normal - the customers chatting and laughing.  But separate again.

Sundays

Yes, 'Sundays', with an 's'.  And not just Sundays, but all through the weeks.  How much do we separate into our little cliques in our churches?  Or even within our writing groups?  How can we move together as one, in our walk with God?  Do we stop; still and silent in our togetherness as we wait on the living Lord?

How much more powerful it is when Christians become a harmonious group, gathered as one in His presence.



Annie Try is a pen-name used by Angela Hobday. She has co-written various papers and books as a Clinical Psychologist and now mostly writes fiction.  Her first published novel, Losing Face, is written mainly for young adults.  The sequel is actively seeking a publisher.  She has two other novels (for adults) in their final stages.


6 comments:

  1. What a thoughtful post Angela. I love the illustrations of ballet and a public café. It does make such a difference when a church is united; peace and harmony come with unity, and people have a chance of seeing Jesus. Hmm, thanks for this x

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    1. Thank you for your comment, Mandy. A lovely extension to what I was trying to say!

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  2. Cliques are often, maybe always, the result of fear. Yes, fear. We gather together with the people whom we feel accept us, and in order to be a group defended against those who might threaten us. Even after the apparent exposure of a ballet class, people will fear others and hurry away, least someone speaks to them! How many of us have made a real friend at exercise class or even writers' groups? That's not from a psychology course or book, it's from my heart, by the way, from observation & thought. Church, a group of people who gather to worship & learn about the Lord should of course be different: what can make it so? Prayer, trust, the leadership's skill and spirituality, the Holy Spirit's work. Some of us long to find that happening in our churches. Thoughtful post, Annie, thank you!

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    1. Thank you for this, Mari. I agree that we can appear united but then go our separate ways - building friendships is so important, as is loving all of those in the group, even those we may find difficult. We definitely need the presence of the Holy Spirit to help us achieve this.

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  3. A. Wry thoughtful post. Inspirational images. Thank you

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  4. Thank you, Wendy, not only for your comment but for the incredible work you are doing for ACW.

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