This past Sunday morning, I sat in the parking lot of New Song United Methodist Church in Mechanicsville, VA. I was scheduled to deliver the morning messages to the congregation with my friend Scott Menzies, so I got there a little early to collect my thoughts and rein in my nerves that were threatening at any minute to bolt from the scene and drag me right along with them.
While sitting there I saw someone get out of a van who looked like one of my Facebook friends. I was sitting some distance away, and given this friend lives in New Jersey I quickly dismissed the possibility it was who I thought it was. Moments later, Scott pulled in and we began walking across the parking lot together. I asked him if he was nervous. With a little more assurance than I really felt was necessary he told me he was "fired up and ready to go." Right about then we walked up on the vehicle I saw the familiar face appear from earlier. It had New Jersey license plates on it. I turned to Scott and told him, "It's time to get nervous pal. Our friend Melissa has come down from New Jersey to hear what you have to say."
Scott, Melissa, and Keith at New Song Church - May 31st, 2015
Posing for the picture above with Melissa was actually the perfect way to set the tone for the morning ahead of us. I was already in a bit of an awed state considering the idea that almost a year and a half after my friend Scott lost his wife, Meg, we were going to share with the church the faith journey she began as a child. Share how it made her the woman, wife, and mother she was. Share how in death the strength of her faith was only being multiplied.
I already knew Scott and I were there at New Song to be multipliers that morning. Seeing Melissa helped me see our chances of success were pretty good; it was God's way of sitting in the middle of Scott and I for a picture and saying, have no fear, I'm here to do a little multiplying myself.
I posted the audio of one of the morning messages after we were done Sunday. After listening to it, my always insightful mother-in-law made this comment:
"Meg is! I appreciate the opportunity to listen to the podcast as you and Scott shared such personal lessons and emotions and challenges, but I have to say the 2 words that caught me and stick with me are "She is," for Meg's influence and her passion and her mission IS still very much alive."
My friend and New Song Worship Leader, Joel Nowak, arranged to have the first message Sunday video recorded. As I watched it last night and considered the hands that led to Scott and I sitting up on that altar, the hands that guided so many wonderful people to be there in our presence, and the hands that continue to guide hearts to share Meg's story in such an impactful way, I couldn't help but rejoice at how powerful and amazing our God IS. And as I listened, it became clearer through each of our words that God has every intention of making sure this story never becomes anything about who Meg was - moments like Sunday are all about defining who Meg IS. I am honored to be just one small part of that definition.
Below is the video of the first service. For those of you who listened to the audio - that was of the second service, so the message in this one is slightly different from that one.