Saturday nights are strange in the wilderness. It’s 9:00. The girls are snuggled in bed; my husband just tackled the dinner dishes; laundry spins in the dryer. And I look about for what to do. If girls were down and home seemed fairly ok, Saturday nights became a night of seclusion and reclusion. I’d steal away to my study, nestle in with the sermon in whatever form, and take time to breathe and be still. Saturday night stillness became a ritual to prepare for Sunday’s business. Or “put on my game face” as Joe would say. (God bless the man for marrying a woman whose Saturday nights were often spent “putting on game face.”)
Tonight I sit at our dining room table. I am preaching tomorrow–but supply sure feels different. The prep and polishing feel so different, almost distant. After several years of travel preaching, I forgot how different it feels to ride in circuit-rider fashion on a Sunday morning. I come bringing text and time. The community gathers in prayer and praise. I fumble through their tradition and then ride away. Other than a few pleasantries, I am not spending time thinking about what tomorrow will bring. I am not the person whose sleeve will get tugged; I am not the ear that will be whispered into; I am not expected to discern how to deal with whatever difficulty might arise.
What a difference that makes on a Saturday night.