“The shepherds got a spectacle. Everyone else got a shepherd.”
Luke 2 the Sunday before Christmas at A Seattle Church. (I should make it clear “A Seattle Church” is the name of the church, not a vague reference.) And I thought that the title said something interesting about the church itself.
A Seattle Church began as a small group in 2013 which grew quickly. Something else was happening in Seattle at about the same time. Mars Hill, a megachurch with multiple campuses, was imploding.
It’s Beginning to Look a Lot Like Christmas,” “The First Noel,” and Relient K’s “Sleigh Ride.” Even better, we sang together as a congregation, “Go Tell It On the Mountain,” “Joy to the World,” “O Come, O Come, Emmanuel,” and “Come All Ye Faithful.” Best of all, each person received a candle as we entered, and at the end of the service, we lit the candles as we sang “Silent Night.”
Advent candle lighting by a family -- which is the way Advent candles were lit in my church traditions. Different readers, including two adorable red-haired girls, read verses from Luke 2, which transitioned nicely into viewing the clip from A Charlie Brown Christmas of Linus reciting the story. Pastor Tim preached a good message on the passage, then said, we’ll be moving from Jesus’ birth to His death," and we had communion together. We closed the service singing “All Glory Be to Christ” to the tune of “Auld Lang Syne” which always gets to me.
arge churches with lots of young people which seemed to go against the story of a dying church, and Tyler asked if that was what we were looking for. And I realized I was talking about spectacular churches --which we saw in our journey, amazing things.
shepherd” churches. Small, humble places where people were cared for. At A Seattle Church, they started out with young families. Now, due to changing demographics and financial realities in the city, they have more single professionals and they desire to serve whoever comes their way.
Christmas is about Immanuel, “God with us,” and A Seattle Church is a place where -- certainly -- God was with us.